Peking Opera – A colourful performance

Peking opera or Beijing opera (simplified Chinese;京剧 traditional Chinese: 京劇 and Pinyin: Jīngjù) originated in the late 18th century in, you guessed it, China. The performance is made up of music, speech, song, dance, combat, mime, acrobatics and the movements are symbolic and suggestive, rather than realistic.

There are colourful costumes, beautifully painted faces and a story line which one can’t even begin to understand. Nevertheless, this form of theatre is a part of the culture and definitely mesmerising!

There are many places offering Peking Opera performances and they all differ. My personal favourite is in the lovely and beautiful Lao She teahouse just off Tiananmen Square.

This particular performance takes about an hour to an hour and a half and is anything but boring. There are martial arts, little sketches, stand up (what I can only assume comedy based on the many chuckling Chinese), singing, dancing and obviously theatre. Not to mention that the “Chinese high tea” served to enjoy during the performance is delicious!

This might just be your cup of tea (see what I did there?), makes for a lovely “Chinese” night out where you will find yourself wanting to know more about the rich Chinese culture and history (and those delicious high tea snacks!).

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