Men in this town were born with mouths that can right wrongs with a few words. Why are you too timid to speak?
As she is about to be executed for a murder she didn't commit, young widow Dou Yi vows that, if she is innocent, snow will fall in midsummer and a catastrophic drought will strike.
Three years later, a businesswoman visits the parched, locust-plagued town to take over an ailing factory. When her young daughter is tormented by an angry ghost, the new factory owner must expose the injustices Dou Yi suffered before the curse destroys every living thing.
A contemporary re-imagining by acclaimed playwright Frances-Ya Chu Cowhig of one of the most famous classical Chinese dramas, which breathes new life into this ancient story, haunted by centuries of retelling.
The world premiere of Snow in Midsummer on 23 February 2017 at the Swan Theatre, Stratford-Upon-Avon, launched the RSC's Chinese Translations Project, a cultural exchange bringing Chinese classics to a contemporary Western audience.
Guan Hanqing (c. 1241-1320) was one of the most famous Chinese playwrights and poets in the Yuan Dynasty. Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig's play Lidless received the Yale Drama Series Award, the Scotsman Fringe First Award, the Keene Prize for Literature and the David Calicchio Emerging American Playwright Prize. In 2011 she was awarded the Wasserstein Prize. Her plays have been produced by Trafalgar Studios 2 in the West End, Page 73 Productions in New York, InterAct Theatre Company in Philadelphia and the Contemporary American Theater Festival in West Virginia. Cowhig was born in Philadelphia, and was raised in Northern Virginia, Okinawa, Taipei and Beijing.