January 26, 2009

‘Shaolin’ rings in Lunar New Year on B’way

The cast of the Chinese martial arts spectacular Soul of Shaolin offered a special Lunar New Year performance on Broadway Monday night.

The performance, which celebrated the beginning of the Year of the Ox, also marked the start of the show's final week in New York.

The production began previews of its run Jan. 13 and opened Jan. 15. It will end its strictly limited 24-performance engagement Saturday, representatives for the show said.

Featuring a cast comprised of 30 Chinese nationals who are highly skilled in Shaolin Kung Fu, Soul of Shaolin is the first production from the People's Republic of China to appear on Broadway.

Direct from appearances in Sydney, Macao and at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, comes a theatrical event that is unparalleled on Broadway, press notes for the show said. 'Soul of 'Shaolin' tells the story of a boy named Hui Guang who is separated from his mother by war. Hui Guang is found and taken in by the legendary monks of the Shaolin temple and raised among them. As he becomes a man, Hui Guang becomes an accomplished master of Shaolin Kung Fu and embarks on a spectacular journey of self-discovery.