The highly-feted Hubei Provincial Peking Opera Theatre performs five signature works from the troupe’s repertoire, shining the spotlight on key Peking Opera characterisations, including the rarely seen Justice Bao. The troupe’s award-winning top notch performers, including Plum Blossom Award-winners Pei Yongjie, Wang Xiaochan and Wan Xiaohui, are set to delight all with their dazzling artistry, immaculate singing and spectacular acrobatic displays.
Xu Ce Running to the City Wall (Cast: Pei Yongjie)
An extract from the Peking Opera classic Xue Gang Rebels Against the Court, it relates how the aged Xu Ce helps avenge the Xue Clan’s sufferings at the hands of an evil official. Performed by Plum Blossom Award-winner Pei Yongjie, whose exuberant singing and impeccable operatic techniques bring out the swelling emotions of the lead character.
Meeting the Queen (Cast: Jiang Feng, Chen Xiaoxia)
Justice Bao is the legendary incorruptible judge who upholds justice and protects the weak. One day, as he is out distributing relief to the poor, he comes across a blind beggar at a temple. The beggar turns out to be the Emperor’s birth mother, and has an imperial yellow handkerchief as proof. Bao then helps her to seek redress. This excerpt showcases the actor’s polished dramatic singing ability.
Monkey King Battles the Water Demon (Cast: Yang Fan, Lu Meng)
A water demon wreaks havoc at Sizhou, causing harm to the people. Monkey King leads an army of heavenly guards to fight her, and the people regain their peaceful lives again. This excerpt is an energetic martial arts display where the dazzling array of acrobatic movements is bound to have audience members on the edge of their seats.
Wu Jia Slope (Cast: Wan Xiaohui, Wang Xiaochan)
For 18 years, Wang Baochuan has waited faithfully for her husband, Xue Pinggui, who was drafted into the army. One day, Xue receives a letter from Wang and decides to return home. When Xue meets Wang at Wu Jia Slope, he does not immediately acknowledge her, but feigns asking for directions to test her feelings. Performed by two Plum Blossom Award winners, this excerpt showcases their abilities to perform lilting, poignant melodies and a gripping story.
Farewell My Concubine (Cast: Pei Yongjie, Pan Xin)
This classic describes the final moments of the legendary King of Western Chu, Xiang Yu. Suspecting that his army has surrendered to the King of Han, Xiang Yu drinks a fond farewell with his beloved concubine Yu Ji, who performs a sword dance as she sings to comfort the distraught King. Her tenderness, unwavering loyalty and feminine virtues are immortalised in this hugely popular and unforgettable showpiece.
Hubei Provincial Peking Opera Theatre
Founded in 1970, the Hubei Provincial Peking Opera Theatre has developed rapidly and become one of the leading Peking Opera troupes, having been conferred the National Key Peking Opera Troupe honour by China’s Ministry of Culture in 2005, and honoured as a protector of Intangible Cultural Heritage (Peking Opera) by China’s State Council in 2008. The troupe boasts many award-winning performers, including four Plum Blossom Award winners: Zhu Shihui, Pei Yongjie, Wang Xiaochan and Wan Xiaohui. The troupe has also won numerous awards such as the highly coveted National Wenhua Award, and has toured overseas to the US, Russia, Canada, Australia, Italy, Japan and more.
About Peking Opera
Peking Opera is one of the key traditional opera genres in China. It encompasses poetry, dancing, music, martial arts, acrobatics and artistic production (such as make-up, face painting, costumes and props). Underlying all these as an artistic foundation are the four basic operatic skills—singing, acting, recitation and acrobatics—that are highly refined and yet also complex. Peking Opera scripts are usually based on themes of filial piety, graciousness, righteousness and faithfulness.