The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts’ School of Chinese Opera will present two shows of the Academy Chinese Opera: Gongs and Drums 22/23 – Forty Years of Cherished Love at the Academy Rita Tong Liu Drama Theatre on June 30 and July 1, 2023, bringing enjoyable performances by students from the music and performance streams to the audience.
Written by renowned Cantonese opera playwright Chen Guanqing and being a classic of Cantonese opera master Law Kar-bo, this masterpiece tells the tragic love story of Lu You, a patriotic poet in the Southern Song Dynasty.
Gongs and Drums 22/23 – Forty Years of Cherished Love
The Cantonese Opera Forty Years of Cherished Love tells the sad love story of the Song poet Lu You and his wife Tang Wan. After three years of marriage, Tang does not get pregnant, so her mother-in-law – a devout Buddhist gullible to malicious gossip – forces her to become a nun and orders her son to marry Wang Chun’e. Tang is so devastated that she decides to take her own life but is saved by Zhao Shicheng. She marries Zhao to stop Lu's yearning for her. It is a painful severance for the two who still love each other, and when they remarry on the same day, the wedding music becomes lamenting songs. Three years later, Lu runs into Tang and Zhao at the Shen Garden, churning up mixed feelings and memories for both Lu and Tang. Lu inscribes on the wall a poem The Phoenix Hairpin before he leaves. Tang reads it and is heartbroken, so much so that she falls ill. She responds with another poem, then slowly pines away until she dies. Forty years later, Lu visits the Shen Garden again. He laments the demise of his love and his country as he reminisces the past, with sigh after sigh.
Performed and accompanied by students of the Performance Major and the Music Major of the Academy’s School of Chinese Opera. Members of the production team are students and faculty from the School of Theatre and Entertainment Arts.
Performance in Cantonese with Chinese and English surtitles
This production is suitable for audience aged 6 or above
Date: 2:30 pm, June 30, 2023;
7:30 pm, July 1, 2023
Venue: Academy Rita Tong Liu Drama Theatre
Tickets are now on sale at Hong Kong Ticketing
The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (www.hkapa.edu)
The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (HKAPA), established by The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts Ordinance in 1984, is a leading tertiary institution in the performing arts in Asia. It provides professional undergraduate education and practice-based postgraduate studies. The study encompasses Chinese Opera, Dance, Drama, Film and Television, Music, and Theatre and Entertainment Arts. Its educational philosophy reflects the cultural diversity of Hong Kong with emphasis on Chinese and Western traditions, and interdisciplinary learning.
Since 2008, the Academy has attained the Programme Area Accreditation (PAA) status awarded by the Hong Kong Council for Accreditation of Academic and Vocational Qualifications (HKCAAVQ) to self-monitor and accredit its own Undergraduate and Post-secondary programmes in the five programme areas of Dance, Drama, Film and Television, Music, and Theatre and Entertainment Arts. Since 2016, the PAA status has been extended to cover Master’s Degree programmes and below. The programmes operated by the School of Chinese Opera are accredited by HKCAAVQ for recognition under the Hong Kong Qualifications Framework.
Besides the main campus in Wanchai, Béthanie, the site of the Academy’s Landmark Heritage Campus in Pokfulam, has housed training facilities for the School of Film and Television since 2006.
In the QS World University Rankings announced in 2023, the Academy is ranked 1st in Asia and 13th in the world in the Performing Arts category.