3 – 6 May 2023

Victoria Theatre

Wild Rice and Victorian Opera proudly present The Butterfly Lovers like you have never seen it before. Fresh from its critically acclaimed world premiere in Australia, this thrilling international collaboration marks the first time this classic Chinese folktale takes flight as an original English-language opera.

Trapped by the constraints of a rigidly patriarchal society, Zhu Yingtai boldly disguises herself as a man to pursue higher education. At school, she meets the bookish Liang Shanbo, and the proverbial sparks fly. What begins as a friendship between equals soon deepens into love between soulmates. But tragedy beckons when Yingtai is called home to be married to a wealthy suitor.

Inspiring and bittersweet in equal measure, the star-crossed love between Yingtai and Shanbo transcends barriers like family, societal expectations, and – in this new incarnation – gender and sexuality.

Conceived and directed with visionary flair by Ivan Heng, The Butterfly Lovers features a sensational new score by Richard Mills, one of Australia’s most distinguished composers, and a soul-stirring libretto by Joel Tan, one of Singapore’s most exciting young playwrights. Created in collaboration with a team of Singapore’s top theatre-makers and an international cast led by soprano Cathy-Di Zhang, countertenor Meili Li and baritone Haotian Qi, The Butterfly Lovers reaches across borders and cultures to bring this epic love story to exhilarating new heights.


Wild Rice and Victorian Opera’s groundbreaking new production of The Butterfly Lovers made its world premiere at the Arts Centre in Melbourne, Australia, in October 2022. The core creative team and lead cast members will reunite in Singapore for the production’s Asian premiere at the Victoria Theatre in May 2023.

Duration: approximately 1 hour 20 minutes (without intermission)
IMDA Rating: TBA

For visitor safety information, click here.

Wed, Thu, Fri & Sat, 7:30pm
$50, $70, $90, $120


Early Bird: 15% off on Category 1 & 2 tickets (from 19 December 2022 to 18 January 2023)

Get closer to the drama in these insightful post-show discussions with the cast and creative team after the show!

4 MAY 2023

If you would like to attend the talkback, we highly recommend booking tickets for the accompanying performance as the dialogue will include spoilers for the show.

Cathy-Di Zhang (Zhu Yingtai)
Meili Li (Liang Shanbo)
Haotian Qi (Zhu/Master)

Director Ivan Heng
Composer Richard Mills
Librettist Joel Tan
Set Designers Ivan Heng & Brian Gothong Tan
Lighting Designer Philip Lethlean
Sound Designer Joel Manuel Fernandez
Costume Designer Max Tan
Multimedia Designer Brian Gothong Tan
Hair Designer Ashley Lim
Make-Up Designer Bobbie Ng