A new three part repertoire at the highly acclaimed "Beijing Opera" venue; Liyuan Theatre is performed daily by one of the leading Peking Opera troupes. According to the theatre, this repertoire has been selected to represent the most classic plays in the history of "Beijing Opera". Liyuan Theatre is inside the historical Qianmen Jianguo Hotel in Beijing, built in 1956. It is located at the former Xuanwu District which is known as the birthplace of "Beijing Opera" where the venue has long flourished amongst a vibrant theatre atmosphere.
Discipline and strict etiquette is often associated with "Beijing Opera" performance. In fact during the 200 year evolution of Chinese opera, it has become an art form so intricate that it is said to take a lifetime to master. A theatre spokesperson explained this point, saying "A common misconception is that Chinese Opera is all about seriousness and discipline, when in fact it is equally filled with humor and joy. The Liyuan Theatre repertoire is a perfect example of the vast variety in styles and nuances Beijing Opera has to offer."
The stories roughly divide into warrior and civil plays, containing everything from dance, comedy, singing, acrobatics to even traditional kung fu. "These magical stories are intended to take you back to the historical roots of China and the Peking Opera.", declared the theatre personnel.
The three part repertoire of "Beijing Opera" starts with a play called "The Crossroads". This kung fu flavored performance originates from the Song Dynasty and tells a story of exile. The murderer of a wicked government official is on the run, but he confuses his friend as his worst enemy which results in a fierce fight between two friends.
Second part, the "Autumn River" is a comic performance, telling a tale of romance between a nun and a scholar. The woman escaped from her convent in order to pursue her love for him, to do this she must cross the Autumn River.
"Stealing Immortal Herbs" is the final and third part of the "Beijing Opera" repertoire. This play filled with drama is from the Qing Dynasty. It tells about a marriage of a human and a snake which has transformed herself into a woman. After finding out her true identity the man is scared to death and the snake tries to save his life by stealing the immortal herbs from the mountain of Kunlun.
The show is available on discount by booking through the Liyuan Theatre Homepage.