Shanghai Moon
(2003 Production)

Shanghai Moon - Gold Headdress.jpg (63573 bytes)Shanghai, 1931. Lady Sylvia Allington is the beautiful, young American born wife of an aged British diplomat. She and her husband travel to Shanghai to persuade a notorious Chinese warlord, General Gong Fei, to donate a priceless antique jade bust to the British Museum. Lady Sylvia, a former carnival cooch dancer from Chicago, falls headlong into a fatal love affair with the mysterious Gong Fei, getting hooked on opium and antagonizing the General’s chief adviser, the elderly Doctor Wu and his enigmatic mistress, Mah Li. A scandal involving a local bordello madame, Mrs.  Carroll and a cockney drug runner named Pug Talbot, leads to tragedy. Gong Fei blames Sylvia for his troubles and in a mad fit, brands her on the buttocks. She shoots him and finds herself on trial for his murder. She is acquitted but still imprisoned in her loveless marriage, knowingly sniffs a poisoned chrysanthemum and dies. “Shanghai Moon” is  an  homage to  movie and stage melodramas such as  “The Bitter Tea of General Yen”, “The Letter”, “The Green Hat”, “The Cheat” and “Shanghai Express.”

Stock and amateur rights available through Samuel  French, Inc.  45 West 25th Street, NY, NY 10010. For all other inquiries, please contact Marc Glick, Glick and Weintraub, 1501 Broadway, suite 2401, NY, NY 10036


Charles Busch; directed by Carl Andress; sets by B. T. Whitehill; costumes by Michael Bottari and Ronald Case; lighting by Kirk Bookman; sound by Laura Grace Brown; wig design by E. Katherine Carr; Mr. Busch's wig and hair design, Paul Huntley; fight director, Rick Sordelet. Presented by the Drama Dept., in association with Sondra Lee.  At the Greenwich House Theater, 27 Barrow Street, Greenwich Village. 


Charles Busch (Lady Sylvia Allington)
Becky Ann Baker (Mrs. Paula Carroll/Sir Geoffrey
Sekiya Billman (Mah Li)
Daniel Gerroll (Pug Talbot/Lord St. John Allington)
Marcy McGuigan (Dr. Wu/Sir Lionel)
B.D. Wong (General Gong Fei).

The opening night curtain call

A brilliant photographer named Jim Cox has shot an extraordinary photo essay of our 2003 production of Shanghai Moon.  These are but a few of his beautiful images.



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Charles Busch as Lady Sylvia Allington


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CB as Lady Sylvia Allington B.D. Wong as General Gong Fei Marcy McGuigan as Dr. Wu Becky Ann Baker  as Mrs. Carroll


New York Times



Shanghai Moon 1999 Production

Other Plays by Charles Busch
Plays 1976 - 1982    Plays 1984 - 1989    Plays 1991 - 2009     Musicals    Solo Performances

Other Stage Appearances
Auntie Mame    Little Me    The Maids

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