Hay straws everywhere, a dog running around off his leash, a few other tiny insects roaming the studio. This on-set atmosphere brought out Zheng Yunlong's unreserved, childish side for our photoshoot.
In his own words, "I am really a very curious person. I am very curious about the style you want to shoot and the main purpose of the video. If it is something I have not tried before, I am very interested." In front of the camera, he occasionally makes some funny expressions, picking up a straw of hay and putting it on his mouth, suggesting that underneath it all, he is a child at heart.
For children, curiosity is a natural ability and a dominant trait. For Zheng Yunlong, curiosity is still the most important part of his personality. As he believes, "The most important thing in our industry is to be curious at all times. You need to observe every little thing that happens around you and observe everyone you meet."
As we grow older, we seem to gradually approach our curiosities with calmness and sometimes even indifference. We suppress our desire to explore, as restraint is recognized as a sign of maturity. Although Zheng Yunlong is generally viewed as quiet and sensible by the public, in his private world, he breaks through the heavy constraints and gets a glimpse of the sky.
All his strong feelings are fully displayed on the stage. When he leaves the stage, his overwhelming emotions in front of the camera are once again subdued and he regains a cool, collected composure. While he may not always share his thoughts with the world, he always has something to say about musicals. In our face-to-face interview, we found that he can be both serious and childish, quiet and personable, these seemingly contradictory traits that truly just let us get to know Zheng Yunlong.
Over the past few months, Zheng Yunlong has been taking the time to rest at home. Like most other industries, the theatre business had to suddenly press pause on everything going on. Performances that were planned for later this year have had to be rescheduled, and reconsidered.
When asked if he felt any panic about where the theatre industry might be going, Zheng shrugged and said, "Although many things that were originally made cannot be done at this stage, it is better to take this opportunity to settle down. This is a rare time for me. I can study with peace of mind and see more things, which will also help the future."
Zheng Yunlong doesn't post many selfies to his Weibo, a popular social media platform in China, but he does share which musicals he has recently watched. Without much of a description to his posts, fans can still naturally appreciate the art that he shares with them.
Zheng perefers to redirect the attention he gets from fans back to the artistry of musicals and dramas. We were able to understand this better when he shared his perspective. His original aspirations are to exist in the world of musicals, and he has gotten here through his persistance and direction. Acting in a musical is not just a job to him, but also a responsibility. Every role is fresh, full of life and meaning for him.
In regards to the future, Zheng Yunlong doesn't have it all figured out yet. "I hope that the future is getting better and better, more and more things are tried, and the requirements for myself are higher and higher, and many previous problems can be solved."
Zheng explains that he can't give a very clear answer because he's still curious about his future. Why set too many limits for yourself? Curiosity is the excitement of exploring the unknown, and the future provides infinite unknowns. While the future is an ongoing entity and we can only hope that everything develops in a positive direction, despite a few possible branches in the road, Zheng hopes to remain his authentic self. "I only hope I can still keep my innocence when growing older."
"Not just ten years later. I hope when I'm sixty, seventy, or eighty years old, I'm still a curious person."
Executive Producer: Adam Feng
Producer: Sami Zhang
Artist Coordinator：Landy Sun
Photography: Li anqi
Hair & Makeup: Zhaikejia
Layout Design: Channing Zhang