Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Monday, 23 September 2013 00:02

Beijing Opera at the Touhill: Huīhuáng de (translation: Impressive!)

Written by Laura Kyro
Rate this item
(0 votes)

The Details

I visited China a few years ago, but am sorry to say I saw none of any native Chinese theatrical arts while there. When I heard the Beijing Opera was coming to the Touhill Performing Arts Center on the campus the University of Missouri, I hoped to rectify my lack of exposure. I must say I came away enchanted and impressed.

Rather than an opera the nature of which we may be accustomed—a single story with a lot of singers—this was more a variety of acts in the nature of (as explained in their program), "a fusion of stylized action, singing, dialogue and mime, acrobatic fighting and dancing." The performers—sponsored by several different local and international organizations—hailed from several cities in the U.S.

The one and a half hour performance featured TU Linghui acting, singing, and dancing some ancient Chinese stories. LIU Chunnuan and WANG Fei used acrobatics and martial arts moves to tell other stories. They also showed deft skills with weapons and staffs. Several pieces of Chinese folk music were performed by a small orchestra playing traditional Chinese instruments. ZHANG Rui impressively and deftly balanced six spinning plates while simultaneously performing floor acrobatics, and also showed off her contortionist abilities by passing her entire body through a narrow tube and a small ring. One of the most impressive of the many special performers was HU Tong, a sweet and powerful soprano singer who nearly blew out the microphones.

Two of the most impressive aspects of the night were the beautiful costumes and the face painting. Colorful, detailed, ornate, and no doubt accurate to tradition, they added an extra something special to every performance.

I'm still sorry I hadn't seen some of these types of performances while I was in China, but I definitely feel I've now made good on experiencing some of these "huīhuáng de" art forms.

Additional Info

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

KDHX Recommends

May
Friday
22

STL Square Dance - May

Folk School of KDHX hosts monthly square dances at the The Stage in Grand Center. The Stage is located at 3524 Washington Ave and provides the perfect space for the Square Dance Revolution! No partner necessary or...


May
Saturday
23

Brunch at the Stage: The Bottlesnakes

KDHX is now curating a Saturday brunch series at the Stage with live music from local musicians and delicious, locally-sourced food and drinks from the Magnolia Café. Brunch at the Stage takes place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m....


May
Thursday
28

KDHX Discovery Series: Soul-Jazz and its Resurgence with Andy Coco

This multimedia session led by KDHX DJ Andy Coco of The Rhythm Section, explores the invention of the soul-jazz genre, its influence, and its contemporary resurgence. With live music from The Provels.   The Discovery...


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

1 user and 14016 guests online
Sign in essaywriter with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook