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Monkey: Journey To the West


Monkey: Journey To the West Tickets

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About Monkey: Journey To the West

First performed in the UK at the inaugural Manchester International Festival in 2007, following sold-out runs, Monkey: Journey to the West is a new opera for the 21st century, directed by the world renowned Chen Shi-Zheng, with music composed by Gorillaz award-winning mastermind Damon Albarn, and design and animation by Jamie Hewlett based on the ancient Chinese legend of spiritual enlightenment.

This reworked version is a dazzling spectacle involving nearly 40 circus acrobats, martial artists and singers from China with an orchestra of Western and traditional Chinese instruments.

Monkey, headstrong, self-important hero of the story, is hatched from a stone egg on the Mountain of Flower and Fruit. After crossing the all-powerful Buddha, Monkey is given the opportunity to redeem himself by travelling to India with the young monk Tripitaka to bring the Holy Scriptures back to China.

Damon Albarn's score deftly weaves Chinese and Western influences to provide a sparkling setting for the story as it moves between heaven and earth. Adaptor and director Chen Shi-Zheng, musician Damon Albarn and artist Jamie Hewlett have created this spectacular opera which is coming to the Royal Opera House this July.

Performed in Mandarin with English subtitles, Monkey is a thrilling experience, an unforgettable sensual and spiritual journey.

"If only all opera were as alive and various as this... a sensual delight and a life-enhancing triumph"
Evening Std 24.7.08 Fiona Maddocks ****

 "...a staggeringly spectacular production..."
Daily Telegraph 25.7.08 Ivan Hewett

 "This unclassifiable extravaganza will be a hot ticket wherever it travels, and deservedly so."
Guardian 25.7.08 Erica Jeal ****

" astonishing and spectacular piece of cross-cultural musical theatre."
Daily Mail 25.7.08 David Gillard ****

"Albarn and Hewlett occupy a special place on the contemporary cultural scene.  These two guys are proof that being brilliant is much the quickest root to being cool."
Independent 25.7.08 Simon O'Hagan *****

"Monkey Journey to the West is a ravishing fusion of circus, dance, theatre, animation, martial arts and song"
Thelondonpaper 24.7.08 Malcolm Mackenzie ****