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August
Renowned Peking opera troupe to showcase in early October
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The China Peking Opera Theatre, a "national level" performing company, will perform Peking operas in early October.

The show, presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, will be held at 7.30pm from October 7 to 10 (Thursday to Sunday) at the Grand Theatre of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

On October 7, the troupe will perform "The Bamboo Grove Trap" and "Pillars of the Dynasty, Visiting the Mausoleum and The Two Faithful Courtiers". Excerpts from "Inscribing on the Fan from The Case of Mistaken Identities at the Flower Show", "The Fisherman and The Levy from The Fisherman's Revenge", "Stealing the Imperial Horse" and "The Stepmother Giving Up Her Own Son" will be played on October 8. "Visiting the Prison from The Injustice Done to Dou E" and "The Gold Bullion" will be staged on October 9. The last performance features the story "The Wild Boar Forest".

Experienced National Class One performers such as Yu Kuizhi, Li Shengsu, Yang Chi (guest actor) and Yang Yanyi (guest actor) will play leading roles in the performances. Famous to many Peking opera lovers, Yu Kuizhi, company director of the China Peking Opera Theatre, has won many important performance awards such as the 7th Plum Blossom Award for Chinese Theatre.

Li Shengsu has a handsome persona and a sweet voice, and is capable of performing the civil and military repertoires. She won many awards in Peking opera that gained her the acclaim as "an outstanding exponent of the Mei School of art of our time".

Yang Chi specialises in various subcategories of the hualian (painted face) roles, including tongchui, jiazi and wu hualian. In 1990, Yang participated in the Bicentennial Celebrations of the Arrival of the First Anhui Operatic Troupes in Beijing with "At the Mouth of Jiujiang River", which won him the acclaim as a "first-rate, all-round performer of hualian roles".

Trained by different leading actors at various times, Yang Yanji was the winner of the First Prize in the "Zhenxing Cup" Television Competition for Young to Middle-aged Peking Opera Performers, a Performing Award at the 5th All-militia Theatrical Showcase and other awards.

Famous maestro Mei Lanfang founded the China Peking Opera Theatre in 1955. Restructured in 1997, the troupe became an outstanding performing group with a cast of young to middle-age artists capable of performing comprehensive roles. Apart from touring throughout China, the company has visited Europe, Taiwan, Macau and Hong Kong and received great acclaim.

Tickets priced at $320, $240, $180 and $100 are available at URBTIX outlets. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens, people with disabilities, 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 purchases of full-price tickets, the following discounts apply: 4-9 tickets, 10%; 10-19 tickets, 15%; 20 tickets or more, 20%. A 10% discount is offered to Friends of LCSD performing venues.

In addition, a pre-performance talk (in putonghua) given by Yu Kuizhi, Li Shengsu, Yang Chi and Yang Yanyi will be held at 7.30pm on October 6 (Wednesday) at Room AC1, 4th Floor of the Administration Building, Hong Kong Cultural Centre. It is free for admission on a first-come, first-served basis.

For programme enquiries, call 2268 7323, and for ticketing enquiries and reservations, call 2734 9009. For Internet bookings, go to http://www.urbtix.gov.hk . For credit card telephone bookings, call 2111 5999. Visit http://www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp for more information on the programme.

Ends/Monday, August 9, 2004
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