Penghao Theatre (蓬蒿剧场)

  • Theatres
35 Dongmianhua Hutong

Simply put, Penghao is what a theatre should be. Founded by Wang Xiang, a dentist who loves the arts, this cosy venue comes complete with café, bar, and rooftop for warm nights. Being nestled in the Nanluoguxiang area makes it a perfect stop between pre-show dinner/shopping, and post-show cocktails – at Penghao, you don’t dress up, you don’t pay ludicrous prices, you simply make theatre the best part of your daily life – everything that is crucial to arts’ survival.

But Penghao is more than a labour of love. Programming is outstanding, and usually has attendant workshops. Given the diminutive size, the theatre features surprisingly stellar guests (mime master Phillipe Bizot is a regular), and national premiers (the first Athol Fugard drama series – in English). Their Nanluoguxiang international summer festival has gone from strength to strength (this includes adding English subitles). But Penghao also wants to help the home team; last year’s featured Chinese show had undergone intensive workshopping before selection. True, it missed the mark, but this theatre is building for the future. And while their budget does not allow for aggressive marketing, hopefully patrons can get the word out. Penghao offers excellent small-scale theatre and dance, good food and beverages, and affordable prices – all in your own backyard. Average ticket price: 79 RMB.

Venue name: Penghao Theatre (蓬蒿剧场)
Opening hours: varies
English address: 35 Dongmianhua Hutong, (off Nanluoguxiang), Dongcheng district
Chinese address: 东城区东棉花胡同35号
  • 4 out of 5 stars