Thursday, November 12, 2009

Hainanese Opera "Traveling Down South"

"Traveling Down South" is a very new modern Hainanese opera production by Haikou City Qiongju Opera Troupe. Having just been showcased in Beijing not long ago, it is going to take part in nationwide drama festival at Xiamen next month.

Unfortunately, I am unable to fly over to Xiamen to watch, but I hope this show will come to Singapore, for after all, this is a production about Hainanese ancestors traveling down south to Singapore to look for work. Hopefully the Hainanese clan association will bring it in soon. The pictures I've found on the net for this production looks promising enough for me to spend my money on the ticket.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Gezi Opera "Love of the Butterflies" Wins the Hearts Of Xiamen Audience

The very high profile production of "Love of the Butterflies" co-presented by Xiamen Minicipality Gezi Opera Troupe and Taiwan's Tang Meiyun Opera Company was finally staged on 29 October and winning the hearts of many Xiamen audience members.

Written by famous Gezi opera playwright Zeng Xuewen, this opera tells the story of a pair of Gezi opera actors in the 40s. Yu Qinlin is a male Gezi opera actor from Taiwan while Yun Zhongqing is a female Gezi opera actress from Xiamen. (I'm not sure if Yun Zhongqing is a real figure, but for those who had watched "Shao Jianghai" before, Shao had a opera teacher who was also called Yun Zhongqing, but she was from Taiwan) They were in love and were about to get married, but Yu had to return to Taiwan to raise money for the marriage ceremony. It was during his absence that the relationship between Mainland China and Taiwan got strained and the ill-fated lover became the victims of the political situation. In 1987, when family members from both sides of the straits finally get the chance to meet again, Yu, who had waited patiently for his lover, was shocked to know that Yun had married to someone who had loved her, but whom she did not love after a long 30-year wait.

This production might have a chance to be showcased in Taiwan next year. I hope this show will have a chance to staged here too, but somehow I just have a feeling that it will never be materialised. So for now, I just wish that a DVD of this show will be available soon..

Lady Precious Stream Waiting For Her Husband For Eighteen Years

It has been ages since I last bought a Mandarin pop album, and recently, I actually bought the debut album of Xiao Hongren. Interesting for me, I've never heard of him before, and never have I ever heard of his songs in anywhere. Some more, I bought it off the net.

Okay, you might be asking now, what does it got to do with Chinese opera (with such a heading for this post some more), and why did I even post this in my blog instead of my other one? Well, the reason why I bought this album is because of one song which caught my attention, and the title is "王宝钏苦守寒窑十八年", which translated into English is as per my title for this post. No, it is not a Hokkien opera song, but this song is somewhat inspired by Gezi opera, and in particular the plot for "Lady Precious Stream". Take a look at this MV for this song:

Only a short segment of the song is sung in Gezi opera, but then I think it's a beautiful fusion of the opera with Mandarin pop, and I think he sings the Hokkien part very nicely. What do you think?