The highly acclaimed "Chinese Clapper Opera Series" will end this month (September), with three performances, titled "Clapper Opera Showcase", as a finale.
In terms of coverage and growth of subgenres among the four main vocal genres of Chinese opera - Liuzi of the east, clapper opera of the West, Kunqu of the South and Yiyang of the North, clapper opera topped them all.
Towards the end of the Ming Dynasty, a massive migration from Shanxi and Shaanxi regions took place as people fled from the bandits plaguing the area and moved elsewhere. They took with them their operatic traditions, which soon evolved with the local customs, dialects and music of their new homes, giving birth to many subgenres of clapper opera. Even the core elements for Cantonese opera in the very south of China, clapper opera and the subgenre of erhuang, can be traced back to this prototypal theatrical form of the Northwest.
Featuring an array of national class one performers, the showcases cover different subgenres of Clapper opera which are rarely performed in Hong Kong. The performances will start at 7.30pm at the Theatre, Hong Kong City Hall, from September 28-30. All lyrics and dialogue will be accompanied by Chinese and English subtitles. Details are as follows:
September 28 (Monday)
Huaibei Clapper Opera "Carrying the Bridal Sedan Chair", Shaanxi Clapper Opera "Reunion at the Pavilion", Wei Clapper Opera of Tianjin "Declaration on the Execution Ground", Qinqiang Kuang Kuang Han Tunes "A Banquet for Lu Bu", Jiangsu Clapper Opera "Accepting the Marshal's Seal" (from "The Lady General Mu Guiying Leads Her Army to War"), and Hebei Clapper Opera "Song of the Sword".
September 29 (Tuesday)
Shandong Clapper Opera "A Quarrel in the Palace Chambers", Laiwu Clapper Opera "The Autumn River", Laodiao Clapper Opera "Interrogating Her Husband", Qinqiang Kuang Kuang Han Tunes "Zhou Ren Repents", Huaibei Clapper Opera "Breaking through the Army Formation" and Wei Clapper Opera of Tianjin "Minding Sheep in the Wild".
September 30 (Wednesday)
Jiangsu Clapper Opera "A Romance Buffeted by Storm", Shaanxi Clapper Opera "Wang Lian Loses Sleep over a Case", Laiwu Clapper Opera "Princess Yinping", Laodiao Clapper Opera "Zhou Ren and His Sworn Brother's Wife", Shandong Clapper Opera "Losing Her Son and Losing Her Mind" and Hebei Clapper Opera "Seeking Peace between the North and the South".
Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, tickets for "Clapper Opera Showcase" priced at $100, $160 and $240 are now available at URBTIX outlets. Senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients may have 50% off (limited quotas for students and CSSA recipients on a first-come, first-served basis). A maximum discount of 20% is offered for group booking. Please refer to the programme leaflet for details.
For enquiries about the programme, call 2268 7325 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp. Ticketing enquiries and reservations can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Tickets can also be booked online at www.urbtix.hk.
Ends/Tuesday, September 8, 2009