Watching an authentic Peking Opera outside China is a seldom opportunity. It is an art that most people know by name, but have never seen before. Peking Opera is more than just music and singing; it also combines drama, dancing, martial arts and acrobatics, which makes it one of the most multifaceted theatrical forms in the world. In 2010 Peking Opera was declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by the UNESCO.
The Peking Opera Festival offers a fine selection of original plays accompanied by an introduction to some of the key facts about Peking Opera. Basic background knowledge about the meaning of typical gestures, the abundant make-up and elaborate costumes help the audience understand the fundamentals of this mysterious genre.
After four celebrated festival editions in several European countries and Brazil, in 2014 Beijing’s most renowned Peking Opera ensemble will perform for the first time in Russia and the United States. Local audiences may look forward to experiencing some of the most distinguised Peking Opera stars on stage. Information about dates and ticket sales will be announced soon!
Female Generals of the Yang Family
The story of Female Generals of the Yang Family is well-known to every household. It is from ancient Chinese historical fiction and tells the story of female generals of the Yang family safeguarding their homeland after most of the male members of the family were killed in a battle. During the reign of Emperor Renzong (1022-1063) in the Song Dynasty (960-1279), the king of Xixia and his army invaded the border, and killed Marshal Yang Zongbao, who was in charge of guarding the frontier.
During that time the Yang House is filled with joy as the one hundred year-old widow She Taijun prepares for the celebration of the 50th birthday of her grandson, general Yang Zongbao, when the grievous news about his death reaches the family.
Yang’s grandmother, She Taijun, restrains her sadness and she persuades the emperor to allow her to lead the troops with her widowed granddaughter-in-laws and grandson, Yang Wenguang. Mu Guiying, Yang Wenguang’s mother and Yang Zongbao’s wife, has long held a grudge against the emperor. Persuaded by She Taijun and others, the patriotic Mu Guiying agrees to lead the army in battling invaders to defeat their enemy. After many trials and tribulations, they defeat the enemy and claim the final victory and return home gloriously.