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Arts in focus at capital's cultural fiesta

By Chen Nan | China Daily | Updated: 2018-01-27 11:25
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A show brought by Peking Opera artists of Zhang Huoding Arts of Cheng School Inheritance Center will be staged on May 8 in Beijing. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Cantonese Opera, like many traditional Chinese operas, combines singing, martial arts and acting. And it attained a peak in the 1950s and 1960s.

Now, Cantonese Opera is performed mainly in the Cantonese dialect and is popular mostly in Guangdong province, Hong Kong and Macao.

In September 2009, UNESCO listed Cantonese Opera as oral and intangible heritage.

The idea of adapting Farewell My Concubine into a Cantonese Opera show took shape in 2016 as Chung was preparing to lead a group of young Cantonese Opera actors to participate in a theater festival in Shanghai, where the show was premiered.

The show was later staged in Hong Kong and Beijing.

Speaking about the show, Chung says: "Traditionally, Cantonese Opera pieces are very long, and could be 4 hours or more. But for the Shanghai festival, we trimmed the piece to 90 minutes, which prompted good feedback from the audiences, especially young.

"The feedback was beyond our expectations, as our goal was only to experiment our ideas about Cantonese Opera and offer an opportunity to young Cantonese Opera actors."

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