Shanghai Theatre Academy (STA) began teaching directing in 1956. In 1961, Shanghai Theatre Academy formally established the Department of Directing with Wu Renzhi as its first dean. The Department of Directing opened the first drama directing course in 1962. Over the past 60 years, the Department of Directing has trained a large number of talents in directing for drama, opera, traditional Chinese opera, film and television for professional troupes at the national and provincial levels and for professional troupes of the army. Since the reform and opening up, the Department of Directing has developed rapidly, its teaching strength has been constantly strengthened, and its teaching and scientific research has been deepened. Most of the students trained have become the backbone of performing arts groups, and a considerable number of them have become famous directors with national influence. In 2020, the Directing for Theater, Film and Television program of Shanghai Theatre Academy was selected as one of the national first-class undergraduate programs.
On 1 November, a series of activities marking the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Department of Directing of Shanghai Theatre Academy began in the Black Box Theater on the Huashan Road Campus. This series of activities kicked off with the performance of "It's Just Spring" by Mr Li Jianwu.
There is a Jianwu Building on the Huashan Road Campus of Shanghai Theatre Academy, which is named after Li Jianwu, a famous Chinese dramatist. This year marks the 115th anniversary of the birth of Li Jianwu, one of the founders of the Shanghai Theatre Academy. "It's But Spring" is a play he wrote when he was 28 and in the prime of his life. On the recommendation of Yang Yang, vice president of the Shanghai Theatre Academy, the Department of Directing chose to make a reproduction of the play this year.
The play is directed by Sha Jianfeng, a student from the Department of Directing. The creative team interprets this drama born in the 1930s from a unique perspective, adopts s a brand new form of interpretation to remember the sages, and fully demonstrates the charm of the work with artful stage art and lighting designs.
Huang Changyong, deputy party secretary and president of STA, Hu Min, deputy party secretary of STA, Yang Yang and Liu Qing, vice presidents of STA, and head of the relevant functional departments and heads of other colleges and departments watched the performance of "It's Just Spring", and joint celebrated the opening of the series of activities marking the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Department of Directing together with teachers and students of the department.