Chinese theares have a long historical and cultural background and is deeply embedded into the Chinese way of life. Book Beijing Flights and Travel to Beijing to see what the city can offer you in the form of entertainment.

There are many different forms of Chinese theatre, unfortunately it is commonly referrred to as Chinese opera, which is only one type of performing art. Chinese opera was developed in the Yuan Dynasty and became more sophisticated with four or five acts per show. The famous forms of opera include Beijing opera and Cantonese opera, which are both very unique. Beijing or Pekingese opera is the most popular and widely known category. This is a traditional Chinese form of theatre as it includes acrobatics, music, mime and dance. It arose in the 18th century and became highly popular in the Qing Dynasty. Chinese opera is now recognised as a treasure of this country and therefore a trip to China is incomplete without a visit to see a performance.

Other Chinese performing arts include Classical Chinese theatre, which can be traced back to the Shang Dynasty (1600 BC-1046 BC.) This type of theatrical pastime regularly incorporates happiness, mimes and acrobatic displays.

Later, in the Tang Dynasty (618-907) online casino performing arts developed into many different forms. Chinese people thoroughly enjoyed various forms of entertainment at this time, and continue to, to this day. This dynasty is sometimes called ‘the age of 1,000 entertainments.’ During this era Ming Huang created an acting school and called it The Pear Garden. His aim was to make a style of drama with a primary focus on music. Because of his success in opening a drama school, to this day Chineae actors and actoresses are commonly known as  ‘Children of the Pear Garden.’

Another type of Chinese drama which both locals and tourists enjoy is shadow play. This emerged during the Dynasty of Empress Ling and it uses show puppets to entertain the audience. Again, there are distinct categories for shadow puppetry, these are Pekingese which originates from the Beijijng area and Cantonese from the south of China. These two styles were differentiated by the appearance of the puppets and their positioning on their rods. However, no matter what form of shadow play you are fortune enough to watch, you can be sure that the plays will be full of adventure and fantasy.

Firstly, Cantonese puppets were larger and were made from thick leather which allowed more substantial shadows to be cast by them. The colour of the Cantonese puppets have hidden symbolic meaning, for instance a black face illustrated honesty, while a red face represented a brave character.

Alternatively, the Pekingese puppets are more delicate as they were made from thinner leather, which was usually from the belly of a donkey. They were painted with bright colours to cast colourful shadows. Due to an ancient supersition that the puppets could come alive at night, their heads were always removed at the end of the day. Some puppeteers went as far as keeping the head and body in separate books. Shadow play is thought to to have reached its peak in development in the 11th century, before becoming a tool used by the government.

If you think that some or all of these performing arts sounds appealing then why not book your trip with China Travel now.

Jack Li

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