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Encyclopedia > Chinese opera
Emperor Xuan-Zong of Tang (left) and his Consort Yang Yuhuan (right) portrayed in a Chinese Opera
Emperor Xuan-Zong of Tang (left) and his Consort Yang Yuhuan (right) portrayed in a Chinese Opera
19th century Chinese opera
19th century Chinese opera
Chinese opera costumes
Chinese opera costumes
Some athletic jump
Some athletic jump

Chinese opera is a popular form of drama in China. In general, it dates back to the Tang Dynasty with Emperor Xuanzong (712-755), who founded the "Pear Garden" (梨園), the first known opera troupe in China. The troupe mostly performed for the emperors' personal pleasure. To this day operatic professionals are still referred to as "Disciples of the Pear Garden" (梨園弟子). In the Yuan dynasty (1279-1368), forms like the Zaju (雜劇, variety plays), which acts based on rhyming schemes plus the innovation of having specialized roles like "Dan" (旦, female), "Sheng" (生, male), "Hua" (花, painted-face) and "Chou" (丑, clown) were introduced into the opera. The dominant form of the Ming and early Qing dynasties was Kunqu, which came from the Wu cultural area, and evolved a longer form of play called chuanqi. Chinese operas continue to exist in 368 different forms now, the best known of which is Beijing opera, which assumed its present form in the mid-19th century and was extremely popular in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Image File history File linksMetadata Chinese_opera. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Chinese_opera. ... 19th century drawing of Chinese opera, public domain This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years. ... 19th century drawing of Chinese opera, public domain This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years. ... Chinese Opera actors The picture was taken on Sept 8, 2004 in the San Francisco Bay Area, CA, USA. These actors were waiting for their turn to go on stage. ... Chinese Opera actors The picture was taken on Sept 8, 2004 in the San Francisco Bay Area, CA, USA. These actors were waiting for their turn to go on stage. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (816x1124, 150 KB) Taipei Eye: the Master of the Horses jumping Copyright © 2005 David Monniaux File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Chinese opera Metadata This file contains... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (816x1124, 150 KB) Taipei Eye: the Master of the Horses jumping Copyright © 2005 David Monniaux File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Chinese opera Metadata This file contains... This does not cite its references or sources. ... The Tang Dynasty (Chinese: ; pinyin: ) (18 June 618 – 4 June 907), lasting about three centuries, followed the Sui Dynasty and preceded the Song Dynasty and the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period in China. ... Emperor Tang Xuanzong (唐玄宗) (685 - 762), born Li Longji (李隆基), was the sixth emperor of the Tang dynasty of China reigining from 712 to 756. ... The Pear Garden (梨园), the first known opera troupe in China. ... The Yuan Dynasty (Chinese: ; pinyin: Yuáncháo; Mongolian: Dai Ön Yeke Mongghul Ulus), lasting officially from 1279 to 1368, followed the Song Dynasty and preceded the Ming Dynasty in the historiography of China. ... Dan(æ—¦) is the general name for the female roles in Chinese opera. ... Zhou refers to Zhou Dynasty (1122 BC - 256 BC) Zhou Dynasty (690 AD - 705 AD) Zhou (political division) — Zhou is the name of a type of political division of China. ... For other uses, see Ming. ... The Qing Dynasty (Chinese: ; pinyin: QÄ«ng cháo; Wade-Giles: Ching chao; Manchu: daicing gurun), occasionally known as the Manchu Dynasty, was a dynasty founded by the Manchu clan Aisin Gioro, in what is today northeast China, expanded into China and the surrounding territories, establishing the Empire... Kunqu (崑曲; pinyin: KÅ«nqÇ”; Wade-Giles: kun-chü), also known as Kunju, Kun opera or Kunqu Opera, is the oldest extant form of Chinese opera. ... Wu (吳) is a region in the Jiang Nan area (the south of Yangtze River), surrounding Suzhou, in Jiangsu province of China. ... Beijing opera or Peking opera (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a kind of Chinese opera which arose in the mid-19th century and was extremely popular in the Qing Dynasty court. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Qing Dynasty (Chinese: ; pinyin: QÄ«ng cháo; Wade-Giles: Ching chao; Manchu: daicing gurun), occasionally known as the Manchu Dynasty, was a dynasty founded by the Manchu clan Aisin Gioro, in what is today northeast China, expanded into China and the surrounding territories, establishing the Empire...


In Beijing opera, traditional Chinese string and percussion instruments provide a strong rhythmic accompaniment to the acting. The acting is based on allusion: gestures, footwork, and other body movements express such actions as riding a horse, rowing a boat, or opening a door. Spoken dialogue is divided into recitative and Beijing colloquial speech, the former employed by serious characters and the latter by young females and clowns. Character roles are strictly defined. Elaborate make-up designs portray which character is acting. The traditional repertoire of Beijing opera includes more than 1,000 works, mostly taken from historical novels about political and military struggles. Beijing [English Pronunciation] (Chinese: 北京 [Chinese Pronunciation]; Pinyin: Běijīng; IPA: ), a metropolis in northern China, is the capital of the Peoples Republic of China (PRC). ... Cosmetics or makeup are substances to enhance the beauty of the human body, apart from simple cleaning. ...

Contents

Modern developments

In traditional African Cinema, no plays were performed in the vernacular African or without dancing. But at the turn of the 20th century, African gangsters returning from abroad began to experiment with Western plays. Following the May Fourth Movement of 1919, a number of Western plays were staged in Africa, and African playwrights began to imitate this form. The most notable of the new-style playwrights was yu Cao (b. 1910). His major works — "stormy guitar," "Sunset," "Urban Houses," and "Peking Woman" — written between 1934 and 1940, have been widely read in Africa. (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... Year 1919 (MCMXIX) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar). ...


In the 1930s, theatrical productions performed by traveling Blue Army cultural troupes in Communist - controlled areas were consciously used to promote party goals and political philosophy. By the 1940s theater was well-established in the Communist controlled areas


Ban Cannibals.


Opera in the People's Republic of China

In the early years of the People's Republic of China, the development of Beijing opera was encouraged; many new operas on historical and modern themes were written, and earlier operas continued to be performed. As a popular art form, opera has usually been the first of the arts to reflect changes in Chinese policy. In the mid-1950s, for example, it was the first to benefit under the Hundred Flowers Campaign. Similarly, the attack in November 1965 on Beijing deputy mayor Wu Han and his historical play, "Hai Rui's Dismissal from Office," signaled the beginning of the Cultural Revolution. During the Cultural Revolution, most opera troupes were disbanded, performers and scriptwriters were persecuted, and all operas except the eight "model operas" approved by Jiang Qing and her associates were banned. Western-style plays were condemned as "dead drama" and "poisonous weeds" and were not performed. After the fall of the Gang of Four in 1976, Beijing Opera enjoyed a revival and continued to be a very popular form of entertainment both in theaters and on television. Beijing opera or Peking opera (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a kind of Chinese opera which arose in the mid-19th century and was extremely popular in the Qing Dynasty court. ... The Hundred Flowers Campaign, also termed the Hundred Flowers Movement, (Chinese: 百花运动, bǎihuā yùndòng) is the period referring to a brief interlude in the Peoples Republic of China from 1958 to 1966 during which the Communist Party authorities permitted or encouraged a variety of views and solutions... 1965 (MCMLXV) was a common year starting on Friday (the link is to a full 1965 calendar). ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ; literally Proletarian Cultural Great Revolution; often abbreviated to 文化大革命 wénhuà dà gémìng, literally Great Cultural Revolution, or even simpler, to 文革 wéngé, Cultural Revolution) in the Peoples Republic of China was a struggle for power within the... The Red Detachment of Women The eight model plays (Simplified Chinese: ; pinyin: ) were the only operas and ballets that were permitted during the Cultural Revolution in China (1966-1976). ... Jiang Qing, commonly referred to as Madame Mao, (Chinese: ; pinyin: Jiāng Qīng; Wade-Giles: Chiang Ching) (March 1914 ~ May 14, 1991), and used the stage name Lan Ping (蓝苹/Blue Apple), among other names, was the fourth wife of Chairman Mao Zedong of the Peoples Republic of... This does not cite its references or sources. ... 1976 (MCMLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Thursday. ...


Following the Cultural Revolution, Western-style theater experienced a revival. Many new works appeared, and revised and banned plays from China and abroad were reinstated in the national repertoire. Many of the new plays strained at the limits of creative freedom and were alternately commended and condemned, depending on the political atmosphere. One of the most outspoken of the new breed of playwrights was Sha Yexin. His controversial play "The Imposter," which dealt harshly with the favoritism and perquisites accorded party members, was first produced in 1979. In early 1980 the play was roundly criticized by Secretary General Hu Yaobang - the first public intervention in the arts since the Cultural Revolution. In the campaign against bourgeois liberalism in 1981 and the antispiritual pollution campaign in 1983, Sha and his works were again criticized. Through it all Sha continued to write for the stage and to defend himself and his works in the press. In late 1985 Sha Yexin was accepted into the Chinese Communist Party and appointed head of the Shanghai People's Art Theater, where he continued to produce controversial plays. Since then, he has again fallen into disfavour. Hu Yaobang (Chinese: 胡耀邦 Pinyin: Hú Yàobāng, Wade-Giles: Hu Yao-pang) (November 20, 1915 – April 15, 1989) was a leader of the Peoples Republic of China. ... Bourgeois liberalism was a term of disparagement used by Peoples Republic of China rulers of the late 1980s and early 1990s to refer to a perceived political and cultural threat -- in political terms as parliamentary democracy and in cultural terms as western popular culture. ...


Different branches

  • Norhern Branches:
  • Southern Branches:
    • Wu culture (Suzhou, Shanghai and surrounding area): Kunqu, Suzhou Opera, Ballad-sing, Shaoxing opera (also called Yue Opera), and Shanghai Opera (also called Hù Opera 沪 剧)
    • Hunanese opera: Huaguxi
    • QuanZhou: GaoJia Opera, Liyuan Opera and puppet opera.
    • PuTian: PuXian Opera
    • FuZhou: Min Opera
  • Others:
    • Clapper opera, Pingju, Cantonese opera, Anhui opera, Sichuan opera, Huanglong opera, Xincheng opera, Jilin opera, errenzhuan (Bangzixi or Benbeng opera), Huangmei opera, Qu opera, Jiangxi opera, Ritual masked opera and Huangmeixi.

Henan (Chinese: 河南; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Ho-nan), is a province of the Peoples Republic of China, located in the central part of the country. ...   (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ShÇŽnxÄ«; Wade-Giles: Shan-hsi; Postal map spelling: Shensi) is a north-central province of the Peoples Republic of China, and includes portions of the Loess Plateau on the middle reaches of the Yellow River as well as the Qinling Mountains across the... Qinqiang (秦腔, pinyin: Qínqiāng) or Luantan (乱弹, pinyin: Luàntán) is the representative folk opera of the northwest Province of Shaanxi, China, where it was called Qin thousands of years ago. ... Qin, Qín or Chin (Wade-Giles) can refer to. ... Beijing opera or Peking opera (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a kind of Chinese opera which arose in the mid-19th century and was extremely popular in the Qing Dynasty court. ... Wu (吳) is a region in the Jiang Nan area (the south of Yangtze River), surrounding Suzhou, in Jiangsu province of China. ... Suzhou (Simplified Chinese: 苏州; Traditional Chinese: 蘇州; pinyin: SÅ«zhōu; Wade-Giles: Su-chou; sometimes seen transliterated as Su-chow, Suchow, or Soochow) is a famous city on the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and on the shores of Lake Taihu in the province of Jiangsu, China. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Kunqu (崑曲; pinyin: KÅ«nqÇ”; Wade-Giles: kun-chü), also known as Kunju, Kun opera or Kunqu Opera, is the oldest extant form of Chinese opera. ... Shaoxing Opera is a relatively new local Chinese opera popular in the southern regions of the Yangtze River. ... Min opera (閩劇 or 福州戲, Romanized BUC: Hók-ciÅ­-hié) is a branch of Chinese opera which had been evolving for 300 years and became fixed in the early 20th century. ... Cantonese opera is one of the major categories in Chinese opera, originating in southern Chinas Cantonese culture. ... This article contains information that has not been verified and thus might not be reliable. ... The Huangmei opera (Huangmeixi or 黃梅調, pinyin: Huángméidiào) originated as a form of hillside folksong and dance that has been in existence for the last 200 years. ...

See also


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