MAPEH 8 in Arts of 4th Quarter: Festivals and Theater Arts
Learn the folk arts from different Asian countries. Study and learn the basic concepts, elements and principles of festivals and theater art forms of Asia specifically of China, Japan, Indonesia, and Thailand. Discover the people, history, culture, and traditions of the above mentioned Asian countries.
Reference book: DepEd Music and Arts of Asia -Grade 8 Learner's Module First Edition, 2013 ISBN: 978-971-9990-76-5 Authors: Belinda R. Anido et al.
China is known for their traditional theater art form, the Peking opera or Beijing opera which combines music, vocal performance, pantomime, dance, and acrobatics. It started in the late 18th century and became fully developed and recognized by the min-19th century. During the Qing Dynasty court it became extremely popular and came to be regarded as one of the cultural treasures of China.
Peking Opera Training
Pupils were often handpicked at a young age by teacher and trained for seven years on contract from the child's parents. After 1911, training took place in more formally organized schools. Students of these schools rose as early as five o'clock in the morning for exercises. Daytime was spent learning the skills of acting and combat, and senior students performed in outside theaters in the evening.
Roles and Characters
Sheng-is the main male role in Peking opera 1. Xiaosheng-actors are often involved with beautiful women by virtue of the handsome and young image they project. 2. Wusheng-is a martial character for roles involving combat. They are highly trained in acrobatics and have a natural voice when singing. 3. Laosheng-is a dignified older role. These characters have a gentle and cultivated disposition, and wear sensible costumes. Dan-refers to any female role in Peking opera 1. Laodan- an old woman. 2. Wudan-a martial woman. 3. Daomadan-are young female warriors. 4. Qingyi-are virtuous and elite women. 5. Huadan-are vivacious and unmarried women. Jing-is a painted face male role who plays either primary or secondary roles. This type of role entails a forceful character, which means that a Jing actor must have a strong voice and be able to exaggerate gestures. The red color denotes loyalty and goodness, white denotes evil, and black denotes integrity. Chou is a male clown role. The Chou usually plays secondary roles whose name also means "ugly." It reflects the traditional belief that the clown's combination of ugliness and laughter could drive away evil spirits.
Visual Performance Elements Peking opera performers utilize four main skills such as the following: 1. Song 2. Speech 3. Dance-acting (includes pure dance, pantomime, and all other types of dance) 4. Combat (includes both acrobatics and fighting with all manner of weaponry)
Chinese Peking opera color meaning when used in masks/makeup
Red-devotion, courage, bravery, uprightness, and loyalty Black-roughness and fierceness Yellow-fierceness, ambition, and cool-headedness Purple-uprightness, sophistication, and cool-headedness Reddish purple-just and noble character Blue-loyalty, fierceness, and sharpness White-dangerousness, suspiciousness, and craftiness. Commonly seen on the stage is the white face for the powerful villain. Green-impulsive and violent and stubbornness Xiaohualian (the petty painted face)-is a small patch of chalk on and around the nose. Clowns of traditional drama who wear this special makeup show a mean and secretive character.
Staging and Costumes Stage: square platforms, the action on stage is usually visible from at least three sides; stages were built above the line of sight of the viewers, but some modern stages have been constructed with higher audience seating divided into two parts by an embroidered curtain called a shoujiu.
Costume: Xingtou, popularly known as Xifu, in Chinese origins of Peking opera. Costumes can be traced back to the mid-14th century. They enable the audience to distinguish a character's sex and status of first glance-if noble or humble, civilian or military, officials or private citizens, give expression to sharp distinctions between good and evil or loyal and wicked characters. Oblong wings (chizi) attached to a gauze hat indicate a loyal official. In contrast, a corrupt official is made to wear a gauze hat rhomboidal wing.
Props: utilizes very few props, will almost always have a table and at least one chair, which can be turned through convention into such diverse objects as a city wall, a mountain, or a bed. A whip is used to indicate a horse, and an oar symbolizes a boat.
Musicians: are visible to the audience on the front part of the stage.
Viewers: always seated south of the stage, therefore, north is the most important direction.
Performers: immediately move to the center north upon entering the stage. All characters enter from the east and exist from the west.