The origin of Kun Opera
Kun Opera is the umbrella term for a cycle of songs that are honored as "the father of a hundred operas". It may date back to the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) when two local residents in Eastern China's Kunshan — Wei Liangfu and Liang Chenyu — blended classical poetry with a number of traditional folk tunes. The combination resulted in the birth of Kun Opera as we know it today.
This new operatic style quickly became popular across the country, largely due to the appeal of its clear and enchanting diction and its memorable tunes. On May 18, 2001, Kun Opera was inaugurated into the world's intangible cultural heritage list. In order to promote and commemorate its traditional culture, Zhouzhuang rebuilt the ancient drama stage and invited the Jiangsu Provincial Kun Opera troupe to perform Kun Opera regularly.