The Role of Operas 戏曲的作用
In his book, Chinese characteristics , which was written more than 100 years ago, A.H. Smith said the Chinese people liked opera. To them, opera was the only entertainment like sports for the British and bull-fighting for the Spanians.
In the traditional Chinese society, opera was used as vehicles to spread knowledge and ethical teachings. Most operas were based on historical events, fore clown or classical novels. They promoted traditional values and moral principles such as punishing the evil and eulogizing the good, loyalty and kindness and denunciation of ungraceful. Operas were able to fill the gaps of education and teaching , especially in the agricultural society.
Opera fans were like today's popular music fans. They enjoy singing in an arena.
The dominant Emperor Cixi in the Qing Dynasty was a super opera fan. She often had opera troops perform for her in her court. This is why Beijing opera overtook all other operas and became national entertainment. It was said the emperors were deeply influenced by the teachings of the operas. Especially those who relating to gratitude.
I know she would pardon anyone to whom she thought in dated regardless any mistakes.
That's right. Some of her stories even suggests that when she engaged the boxes to fight against the Westerners. She was under the illusion they were invisible. She got the notion from the operas they could not be heard by bullets. Of course, she was wrong. And the boxes were quickly defeated by the Westerners.
Well, if emperors had so much influence on the danger operas I think it would be even more so on ordinary people. Seems Beijing opera is no longer as popular as it was. Does it still have influence on people?
Now, it is TV. Since every household has a TV. Its influence should not be underestimated. There was a popular Korean TV drama not long ago which captivated the audience by its costumes and food. As a result, some studios in Beijing began taking photo portraits in Korean costumes and some restaurants introduce similar Korean food.
Now, I understand why the government discourages TV house from imitating Hongkong and Taiwan accents. It also explains why TV stations are forbidden for every programs about dottery and other ethical topics.
That's great, China has been experiencing in any increasingly high divaricates where dottery is decided as the main reason