New Shanghai Theatre in Branson, Missouri, to open May 15, 2005

In 2005, the Acrobats of China featuring the New Shanghai Circus will perform in a brand new theater currently under construction in Branson, Missouri. The New Shanghai Theatre is located at 645 State Hwy 165, just south of Hwy 76 between the Ain’t Misbehaving Theatre and Coffelt Country. The New Shanghai Theatre, featuring modern Chinese architecture, will seat approximately 900 and is scheduled to open on May 15, 2005. Shows are at 3 & 8 PM, through December 14.

Lizhi Zhao, owner of the New Shanghai Circus said, “2005 will mark our 8th season in Branson. Each year over 40 Acrobats of China travel over 14,500 miles to perform in the heartland of America. We’re pleased to now have a permanent home in Branson, Missouri. This beautiful theater will have state-of-the-art lighting and sound along with spectacular backdrops.” The theater will feature a giant sculpture of an early example of Chinese Bronze Ware, along with modern Chinese artwork, cascading waterfalls, and Chinese gardens.

Bill and Janet Dailey are building the New Shanghai Theatre. Bill Dailey said, “This theater is being built specifically for the New Shanghai Circus as their show requires extra rigging and large space for their backdrops. The back of the theater is 50 feet tall.” The New Shanghai Circus features aerial ballet, dancing lions, modern Chinese performance art, hoop diving, tumblers, jugglers, magicians, spinning plates, bicycle aerobics, pole climbing, and more. New Shanghai Circus performers begin training at the age of 6 and come from the same school as Chinese Olympic Gymnasts. In addition to their shows in Branson, the New Shanghai Circus presents shows year-round in Shanghai, China, and also tours internationally and across the United States.

Theater construction began in late October of 2004, with excavating by Tom Boyce. Designers for the exterior and interior of the New Shanghai Theatre are Bill Lennon and Tom Gass of Backstage Connections, architecture by Allen Johnson of General Design, building and other subcontracting by Scott Bockman of Cornerstone Building Services in Springfield, Missouri. An official groundbreaking was held on November 17, 2004.

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