After dinner, we took a bus ride to Sha Tin where there was another Teochew opera performance going on. I was surprised by how similar Hong Kong buses are to our Singaporean ones. The doors, the driver’s seat, the stairway leading to the upper deck, the passengers’ seats and the holding rails are almost identical to the ones we have in our local buses. They even have public TV on the buses, and passengers pay their bus fares by tapping their Octopus card onto the fare deduction machine just like we do, except that they don’t have to do the same when alighting as the fare is the same regardless of how far you travel.
Tonight’s show was performed by a troupe from Chaozhou City, though the banner of the stage stated “Hong Kong Xin Han Jiang”. The show was much better compared to last night’s show. The actors gave a better performance, and what I like most was the percussions. It was strong, but not noisy. It managed to create good atmosphere at certain scenes, like in the fighting scene whereby the princess of the Ani tribe got attracted to the good looks of the Chinese general, the percussionists used a mixture of strong and weak beats to bring out the love at first time of the princess. (Big drums are usually not used in such scenes in other shows) However one funny thing I noticed was that there were 2 very distinctively different styles of dressing on stage; one was the typical Teochew opera style from China whereby actors used softer shades of red for makeup and wore costumes with Teochew embrodieries, and the either was the Hong Kong style which is similar to that of Cantonese opera whereby actors used stronger red and white contrast for makeup and wore costumes decorated with shiny sequins. It looked rather awkward, as if the show was put up by a combined troupe of Mainland and Hong Kong actors.
The show was very captivating, but I had to leave at 11.30pm as it was getting late (the show would not end before 1am). Sun Di lives near the airport, so he sent me back to my hotel first before catching another bus back home, while Ling Jie went home on her own as it wasn’t in the same area. Both Sun Di and I were so hyperactive at the opera, but once we left the show, we became lethargic. How typical Chinese opera fanatics we were! Tomorrow I will be leaving for home, and my Chinese opera experience in Hong Kong will definitely be something I can never forget, and also something which I will look forward to in future!
Post published on 27 August