An old flame is putting on a new face

Updated: 2015-02-23 10:30

(China Daily)

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An old flame is putting on a new face

A Sichuan Opera actress prepares for a performance. Zhu Xingxin / China Daily

Sichuan Opera is one of China's oldest opera traditions. During the early years of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), there were five independent local operas simultaneously prevalent in Sichuan province and surroundings. Overtime, they gradually merged and evolved into what is today called Sichuan Opera. This opera tradition is distinguished by a number of famous stunts such as the "face-changing" and "fire-spitting" tricks. Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province, remains the main home of opera's tradition, while other influential locales include Yunnan, Guizhou and other provinces in Southwest China.

Like other traditional Chinese opera styles, Sichuan Opera has faced challenges in attracting new generations of enthusiasts and maintaining its status in a world that has seen new entertainment forms emerging in film, the Internet and pop music. In recent decades, many reforms have been made adding modern, fashionable elements to the opera. Through these, Sichuan Opera has had success at home and gained popularity overseas during performance tours.

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