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Classical Hakka Three-Characters Tea-Picking Opera│2018 Taiwan Traditional Theatre Festival

Classical Hakka Three-Characters Tea-Picking Opera│2018 Taiwan Traditional Theatre Festival
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    • 2018/04/27 19:30 ~ 2018/04/29 16:00
    • Address:Taiwan Traditional Theatre Center Experimental Theatre

Time, Date, and Venue
2018/04/27 Fri. 19:30-21:05 The Mountain Tea Harvest, Convincing Sanlang to Sell Tea, Buying Wine
2018/04/28 Sat. 19:30-21:05 Fortune telling, The gold hairpin as a gift, Ferry Tao-Hua across a river
2018/04/29 Sun. 14:30-16:05 Couple Who Sell Tofu, Romance on the river, Before visiting the Temple fair
Length:about 95 minutes (with a 15 min. intermission)
Ticket Price:NT$600
With Chinese subtitles
Shows will be recorded.

About the Performance

2018/04/27 Fri. 19:30-21:05
The Mountain Tea Harvest
This short drama involving dancing and exchanges of yodel songs describes tea pickers going up into the hillsides to pick tea. When the separate parties of men and women meet each other along the way, the men begin to tease the women with cheeky yodel songs. Unwilling to appear weak, the women sing songs in reply. The atmosphere of friendly banter and wit continues until they all finally go on their way together.

Convincing Sanlang to Sell Tea
The story is the sequel to Taiwan Hakka three-character tea-picking Opera, “Chang Sanlang Selling Tea.” The content of opera describes how after Chang Sanlang picked tea from the mountain and brought home the harvest, his wife Taohua and sister Jinhuan tried their best efforts to roast the tea leaves brought back by Sanlang into the best products. Nonetheless Sanlang did not show any interest and had no intention to go out and sell the tea. To maintain the livelihood, the wife and the sister tried to convince Chang Sanlang with selling tea but Sanlang refused with the excuse of being reluctant to leave his young wife at home. Because of Sanlang’s swinging attitude and lack of determination to do the tea business, his wife and sister became more worried. They intensified the persuasion and finally Sanlang agreed to leave home and go sell tea.

Buying Wine
Itinerant tea seller Chang San-lang has heard about the pretty Woman at the wine shop and decides to drop by for a drink. There Sister Wine entertains him with tea and wine, and Chang San-lang is soon infatuated with her good looks. After a drink or two he regales her with ardent love songs.

2018/04/28 Sat. 19:30-21:05
Fortune telling
There is a woman, Hong, Tao-Hua, whose husband had gone out to sell tea for a long time without any news. She went out to search for him and bumped into a fortune teller. She asked the fortune teller about when she would find her husband. They had interesting dialogues by singing a melody from a very famous Hakka folk song.

The gold hairpin as a gift
Cai-Z-Ge is a salesman traveling with all his goods on a shoulder pole. One day, he came to A-Nai-Gu’s house. Once he saw how pretty A-Nai-Gu was, he forgot about making money, but instead pleased A-Nai-Gu with many gifts instead

Ferry Tao-Hua across a river
Zhang, San-Lang, who is Tao-Hua’s husband, had been doing business for several years without any contact. Zhang, San-Lang’s sister, Jin- Hua, and Tao-Hua were too worried to wait at home, and decided to go out and search for him. They met a ferryman, who attracted by the two pretty women, suggested a competition of having dialogue by singing folk melodies (from the mountain area). If they win, they can take the ferry for free, and if not, they are going to marry the ferryman. A great performance of singing follows, in which they kept laughing at each other and never yielded to each other.

2018/04/29 Sun. 14:30-16:05
Couple Who Sell Tofu
A couple, who sell tofu for a living, talked and sang to each other. At first they have their own soliloquies, then they have a dialogue . Their conversations are always about tofu, they praise tofu and share various recipes of for tofu. Their vivid performance and songs impressed the audience as evident by the laughter of the audience.

Romance on the river
It’s a romance about the ferryman and a young girl. In the dance, the long fan represents waves of the river which means how they have missed each other. Different from the typical humorous theme (teasing each other) of dance, it is about high and low in love, as well as are the waves of river of life.

Before visiting the Temple fair
It’s a type of Hakka drama, “teasing dialogues.” An old couple hurried to an extraordinary Temple fair. The husband complained to his wife that she was making them late, and the wife gave him tit for tat. The dialogues are expressed by singing melodies from folk songs from mountain areas.

The Performing Group│Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe
Over one hundred years of tradition and 29 years of ongoing legacy
Mr. Rong-Xin Zheng, the grandson of a famous actress in Taiwan Hakka operas, Madam Mei-Mei Zheng, reorganized the ““Ching Mei Yuan” Hakka opera troupe of his grandmother in 1986. In 1988, the troupe registered with Miaoli County Government as “Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe” and has been committed to the legacy and promotion of the artistic glamour of traditional Hakka operas since the foundation. The troupe has been awarded by the Ministry of Education in “Folk Art Heritage Award,” “Award for Merits in Promoting Social Education” and “Social Education Charity Award” and is the preservation troupe of“intangible cultural heritage” in the traditional art category of “tea plucking opera.”

Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe is often invited by local art and culture departments as well as temple fair festivals for performance. It also takes traditional tea plucking operas into the national art hall, including the production and performance of nine Hakka operas in National Theaters with solid foundation of Hakka tea plucking operas in the industry of Taiwan operas. Apart from the constant tour performance in art and culture departments and temple fair festivals in Taiwan in attempt to promote Hakka opera culture, the troupe have performed frequently in countries such as China, U.S., Canada, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Austria, Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil. The troupe has taken traditional Hakka tea plucking operas to the global stage and is recognized by the overseas Chinese communities with enthusiasm.

Not only does Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe participate in live stage performance, the troupe also started the participation in the production and filming for sophisticated opera programs at “Hakka Television Station.” The troupe has recorded some tens of remarkable operas that have been recognized and supported by a large number of TV audiences. The troupe also actively records Hakka operas for publication in order to record and preserve the arts of traditional Hakka opera performance. In 2014, the “Farewell My Concubine DVD” was recorded and awarded with the Best Performance of the Year Award and Best Video Publication of Traditional Performing Arts “25th Golden Melody Awards for Traditional Arts and Music.” In 2016, the troupe recorded the “Romance of Qien Yuan” DVD and was awarded with the “27th Golden Melody Awards for Traditional Arts and Music” in category of best traditional performing arts and film publication award.

Lady Zheng Yue-Jing has served as the leader of Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe since 1998 and she continues the performing style of the troupe with “refreshing elegance.” On one hand she inherits the artistic quality of traditional Hakka operas and on the other hand, she constantly creates new operas suitable for all ages that cope with the trends of the time. Under the principle of maintain mountain songs, tea picking and “Nine Accents and 18 Tunes” in Hakka opera, she extracts music elements such as “Luantan, Siping, and Waijiang” to present the abundance and diversity of Hakka opera arts. Troupe members comprise four generations, including the elderly, mid-aged, youth, and adolescence. The senior masters lead the young talents to perform together on stage. The troupe is proactive and serious about the management and operation of their performance. Moreover, the enthusiastic support, assistance and promotion from all circles have driven “Romg Shing Hakka Opera Troupe” to shift performance on open stage in front of temples gradually to large indoor stage and even to the National Theater, where the artistic glamour of traditional Hakka tea-picking operations reappears.

Organizer: National Center for Traditional Arts
Advisor: Ministry of Culture
* Please visit the official website for all the latest updates.
* The organizers reserve the right to make changes to the event program.

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