Cao Yu’s early 20th-century drama Thunderstorm, regarded as a masterpiece in Chinese theater, is dismantled and reassembled in this new interpretation helmed by internationally acclaimed director Wang Chong. Using real-time video editing and sound mixing from action occurring on stage, a hypnotic, near-silent movie unfolds to tell the explicit story of two female characters discovering that they have been cheated on by the same womanizing playboy.

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Updating the story to a Beijing official’s home in the 1990s, Wang and his company of Beijing performers reinvent the classic play to reflect the complexities of contemporary capitalist-communist society, the ubiquity of technology and the sex-obsessed global landscape. Chong incorporates live pingtan players, a centuries-old form of traditional Chinese musical storytelling, to create the dialogue and soundtrack onstage.

Performed in Chinese with English supertitles

Co-presented by The Public Theater’s Under the Radar Festival and NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

Support for this presentation of THUNDERSTORM 2.0 was provided by the Asian Cultural Council.

This tour is supported by the Beijing Culture and Arts Fund.

Post-Show Discussion is sponsored by China Institute

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For more information about the Under the Radar Festival, please visit

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Thunderstorm 2.0
Thunderstorm 2.0
Thunderstorm 2.0
Thunderstorm 2.0