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Beijing Opera The Dieing Treasure of China Beijing opera is a national treasure of China with a history of 200 years In the 55th year of the Qing Dynasty 1790 the four big Huiban opera entered the capital and combined with Kunqu opera Yiyang opera Hanju opera and Luantan in Beijing Through a period of more than 50 years of combination and integration of various kinds of opera there evolved the present Beijing opera Beijing opera is a combination of stylized action singing dialogues acrobatic fighting and dancing to represent a story or depict different characters and their feelings of anger sorrow happiness surprise fear and sadness In Beijing opera there are four main types of roles sheng male dan young female jing painted face male and chou clown male or female Sheng has some sub-categories including Senior Junior Acrobatic Junior Acrobatic Child Red-face Poor Official etc These are classified according to the roles characteristics Male roles are either civil or military The actors themselves are mainly trained for three main parts Senior Male Role or Lao Sheng a middle-aged or old man who wears a beard Junior Male Role or Xiao Sheng Hsiao sheng a young man and Acrobatic Male Role or Wu Sheng a man of military tenor especially skilled in acrobatics Lao Sheng actors are required to attain the dignity of bearing and gentle polished manners of the middle-aged mandarin official or scholar in military plays they may be a general or high-ranking officer of a gentler and more educated character than of the painted faces Their apparel accordingly is of good quality but not too garish in its design or color A Lao Sheng has a black or white beard depending on his age and wears a black hat with two fins on either side which vary in shape according to his rank in a civil role When a military role is played the costume is quieter and of
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