Wudaokou school revives Chinese opera

December 13, 2009 | Posted by Chris

This past week Beijing University announced a new program designed to help revive a traditional but endangered form of Chinese folk opera, Xinhua News reports. Known as Kunqu Opera (昆曲 or kūnqǔ in Chinese), this style of opera spans 500 years and has been declared one of the world's "masterpieces of oral and intangible heritage." Beijing University's new program will feature lectures, courses and performances meant to inspire new academic interest in the art form, which is presently only taught in a few Chinese universities. Workshops will also be held at Beijing Normal University and the Euro-China International Business College to explore how Kunqu Opera may be introduced internationally. Ye Lang, Dean of Beijing University's Cultural Industries Institute, said that December 9-20 has been designated "Kunqu Opera cultural week" and will feature performances of two plays produced by writer Pai Hsien-yung, who is jointly initiating the new program.

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