Good news for Shanghai theatre-goers: former popular downtown theater Dashijie will reopen for a trial run next Wednesday.
The 16,800 square meter entertainment center on Xizang Nan Lu was built in 1917 and was used to stage Chinese operas as well as host singers and acrobats. Once the city’s most fashionable place to be seen, the venue closed in 2003.
The soft reopening will only be open to invited visitors, such as local government staffers, university students and media personnel. However, opening days will slowly increase from 3 days a week after Chinese New Year, with a full grand reopening scheduled for March.
The theater is being reopened as an exhibit to China’s cultural heritage. The city already has 55 national-level and 220 city-level intangible cultural heritage centers, including those for paper cutting, dough sculpture and lantern making.
With a trend of the city indiscriminatingly tearing down the old to make way for the new, it’s refreshing to see Shanghai preserving some of its unique history.
[Photo via Shanghai Daily and Chinese Posters]