L.A.'s First Ever Thai Theatrical Performance Debuts on Aug. 30th

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The arts of Thailand will get an American twist when "Legend of the Chao Phraya: The Siamese River of Life" debuts at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre on August 30th. An original bilingual (English and Thai) production by the California-based Mantra Theatre (http://www.mantratheatre.com) troupe, the show tells the story of a Queen and her people who have settled along the banks of the Chao Phraya River, in the area that would grow to become Thailand's capital city of Bangkok. The contemporary theatre performance merges original music, dance, mixed martial arts and spectacular Thai costumes.

The traditional arts of Thailand will get an American twist when an extraordinary new theatrical production debuts at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre on August 30th, "Legend of the Chao Phraya: The Siamese River of Life" by the California-based Mantra Theatre (http://www.mantratheatre.com) troupe. The production unveils an original story of a Queen and her people who have settled along the banks of the Chao Phraya River, in the area that would grow to become Thailand's capital city of Bangkok. The a contemporary theatre performance merges original music, dance, mixed martial arts and spectacular Thai costumes. (Photos and Music Available Upon Request )

"Legend of the Chao Phraya: The Siamese River of Life" by Mantra Theatre will be presented during Labor Day Weekend on Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 8:00 p.m. (one night only), at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood. Tickets are $30 and are available at (323) 461-3673. http://www.fordtheatres.org.

"We hope to enchant the audience with a dramatic story told in English and Thai," says Fontip Seeboonruang, a co-producer of the show and a percussionist in the musical ensemble. "The production imaginatively weaves together Thai drama, original music, dance and martial arts. It will be a magical evening for those who enjoy Thai culture or innovative new theatre."

Mantra Theatre is a Thai Contemporary Music and Dance Ensemble established in 1997 by a group of artists from Thailand who resided in the Los Angeles area. With a background in various forms of arts, they decided to come together to promote and preserve the Thai arts by combining it with more modern forms of music and dance in order to make it more exciting and captivating to an international audience. Since its establishment, many of the ensemble's members have returned to Thailand to work in Thailand's booming music industry, as producers, musicians and vocalists. With the departing of many of their members, Mantra Theatre recruited a new generation of musicians with degrees in Ethnomusicology from UCLA, and background in both Western Classical Music and Thai Traditional Music.

"Legend of the Chao Phraya: The Siamese River of Life" is a produced by Mantra Theatre and presented by the Thai Health and Information Services, Inc. (THAIS), a non-profit organization providing low cost health services to the Asian communities of Los Angeles. Sponsors include: The Royal Thai Consulate General (Los Angeles), Tourism Authority of Thailand, Kasikorn Bank, Sunlee, Law Offices of Nantha & Associates, LAX-C Market, Chao Krung Thai Restaurant, Chadaka Thai and the Thai TV5 Global Network.

Legend of the Chao Phraya is part of the Ford Amphitheatre 2008 Season, a multidisciplinary arts series produced by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission in cooperation with Los Angeles County-based arts organizations. For complete season information log on to http://www.FordTheatres.org.

THE FACTS

WHERE
John Anson Ford Amphitheatre
2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East
Hollywood, CA 90068
Just off the 101 (Hollywood) freeway across from Hollywood Bowl and south of Universal

HOW MUCH
Adults $30

PURCHASE TICKETS
323 461-3673
http://www.FordTheatres.org

PARKING
On-site, stacked parking costs $5 per vehicle.

Free parking and a complimentary shuttle bus are available from the University City Metro Station (Lankershim Blvd. and Universal Terrace Parkway). Shuttle buses begin running 2 hours before the show, every 20 minutes.

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Fontip Seeboonruang

Robert Philips

818-471-9984
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