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LCSD to present Cantonese vernacular art talk series

     Associate Professor Yu Siu-wah of the Department of Music of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) will host a talk series entitled "Cantonese Vernacular Art: Nanyin and Cantonese Opera" in January. Demonstration performances by veteran nanyin singer Ng Wing-mui and several young Cantonese opera performers will supplement the talks.

     Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the talks and demonstration performances, which will be conducted in Cantonese, will take place at 8pm at the Theatre of the Yau Ma Tei Theatre. Details are as follows:

January 17, 2014 (Friday)
Topic: "Ng Wing-mui's vocal art in the narrative singing genre of 'dishui nanyin'"
Performers: Ng Wing-mui and Leung Hoi-lei

     The term "dishui nanyin" originally referred to the singing of nanyin ballads by blind artists. Given this background, can we categorise nanyin singing by artists with normal eyesight as dishui nanyin? The talk will discuss why the nanyin recordings made by the famous actors in Cantonese opera are also called by this, the meaning behind the term and whether it is appropriate to refer to the blind artists today using the terms "gushi" and "shiniang". The 89-year-old nanyin maestro Ng Wing-mui will demonstrate and share her valuable experience in preserving the art form.

January 24, 2014 (Friday)
Topic: "The role of Jiangxian and the use of nanyin in 'Returning the Qin under the Willows' from 'The Reincarnation of Plum Blossom'"
Performers: Ling Yan, Chan Chak-lui and Chor Ling-yan

     The talk will screen a segment of Tong Tik-sang's "Returning the Qin under the Willows" from "The Reincarnation of Plum Blossom", which highlights the close relationship between Huiniang, the heroine, and her friend and companion, Jiangxian. The audience will listen to the nanyin passage, the dramatic spoken dialogue between the hero and the heroine, and the tune taken from the zheng piece "Rain-lashed Banana Tree by the Window" as part of a comprehensive overview of the music and dramatic idiom of this operatic excerpt.

January 25, 2014 (Saturday)
Topic: "The correlation between the sung and the spoken passages in 'Reunion at the Nunnery' from 'Princess Changping'"
Performers: Ling Yan and Chan Chak-lui

     In the earliest version of the original "Princess Changping" libretto by Tong Tik-sang, this was presented in a spoken form. The piece was then rewritten into a sung passage by Yip Siu-tak in 1961 for the sake of recording. In this talk, the original version by Tong, with the part delivered as a spoken passage, will be presented to discuss the correlation between a sung passage and a spoken passage in terms of music and drama.

     Yu Siu-wah has worked for the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra, Radio Television Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. He teaches Chinese music history and ethnomusicology at CUHK and has been the Director of the Chinese Music Archive from 2005 to 2012.

     Tickets for the "Cantonese Vernacular Art: Nanyin and Cantonese Opera" talk series, priced at $80 for each talk, are now available at URBTIX outlets, on the Internet and by credit card telephone booking. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and their minders, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients (limited tickets for students and CSSA recipients available on a first-come, first-served basis).

     For enquiries on the talks, please call 2268 7325 or visit Ticketing enquiries can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Tickets can also be booked online at .

Ends/Friday, December 6, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:26


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