Dancers cast for lead role in 'Mao'


SYDNEY -- Dancers from Australia, China and England will play the lead role of Li Cunxin in Bruce Beresford's adaptation of Li's memoir, "Mao's Last Dancer," producers announced Tuesday.

Birmingham Royal Ballet principal dancer Chi Cao, reputedly one of the world's top classical dancers, will play the adult Li. The teenage Li will be played by Australian Ballet dancer Chengwu Guo, while Li as a boy will be portrayed by Huang Wenbin, from Beijing.

They will join other key cast announced last week, including Kyle McLachlan and Joan Chen. Filming starts in Beijing this month before moving to Australia and the U.S.