Sichuan Opera artists celebrate Lantern Festival

Chinese opera artists from southwestern Chongqing Municipality Monday evening made debuts of classic Sichuan Opera and celebrated the Lantern Festival at the northernmost art center in Britain.

After 16 hours of bumpy journey in the North Sea, performers of Chongqing Chuan Ju Theater finally arrived in the capital city of Shetland, Lerwick, on Monday morning.

Young performers performed several classic episodes of Sichuan Opera at Mareel, the most northerly music, cinema and creative industries center in Britain on Monday evening.

Performers first exhibited some highlights of the 300-year-old Sichuan Opera, one of the oldest local operas in China, including the five types of characters and various kinds of performing techniques, costumes and music.

Comic "Gun Deng", one of the programs, showed the performer's excellent acrobatic skills by crawling under two 40-centimeter-high benches with an oil lamp on his head.

They successfully amused the audience through their wonderful performance and humoristic facial expressions and words, and won warm applause and cheering.

"It was incredible and amazing, and so colorful and spectacular. I really enjoyed the 'Oil Lamp'. I thought that was really very funny and the two actors were superstars. The performance is different from television. I'd like to see more," said Brian Spence,following the show.

Beth Cumming, a mother of three children, told Xinhua: "The opera is really good. It is something really different. I like the costumes and their face paintings. I love experiencing anything different and particularly, the opera performance troupe has come all the way here, and I think it is such a great opportunity for the children to see something so different."

Juan Brown, a local resident, said there's a very small Chinese community living in Shetland, so some local people have limited contact with Chinese culture.

"It's good for people to see other cultures and something like this is great, cause it's not only entertaining, but also offering an insight into another culture," he added.

Wang Qi, the actor of "Oil Lamp", said "I fear I couldn't perform well today because the waves were so big last night and I got seasick. Fortunately I got better this morning and I'm full of energy when thinking of showing our traditional Sichuan Opera to British audience."

The troupe will stage their last performance of their tour at Platform Theater in Glasgow on Wednesday.

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