Talk on full-length opera “An Empress’ Benevolence”

13 Jun 2015 (Sat) 2PM @ NLB Level 3

********************** TICKET INFORMATION ***************************
  • Ticket Categories (please refer to the seating plan for the location of the categories)
  • 20% discount for PAssion Card Members, Quote the first 4 digits of your PAssion Card as the promotion code to enjoy the privilege.
  • 20% discount for Senior Citizens/Students
  • Seating will be assigned on a first-come-first-served basis.
  • This event is presented in Cantonese
  • For any enquiries on this event, please feel free to contact us via email at ctc@botempus.com or call us at +65 6100 2684.
*************************** EVENT SYPNOSIS ***************************

To celebrate Singapore's Golden Jubilee, Chinese Theatre Circle Limited (CTC), in collaboration with the renowned China Guangzhou Hong Dow Cantonese Opera Troupe, will be presenting the Singapore International Cantonese Opera Festival from 30 May to 21 June 015. The Festival will feature seventy Cantonese Opera artists, musicians, and enthusiasts from Australia, England, France, and Singapore in five performances at the Drama Centre from 17 - 21 June 2015 at 7.30 pm.

Kicking off the Festival will be a talk in English by Leslie Wong, homegrown Cantonese Opera playwright, at the Drama Centre Function Room on National Library Building, level 3, on Saturday 30 May 2015 at 2.00 pm. The subject of his talk is "The Role of Cantonese Opera In Our Nation Building". He will examine the development of Cantonese Opera in Singapore over the last fifty years and trace how this traditional theatre artform, almost sinking into oblivion in the early 1960s, rose to become a driving force in our nation building. The objective is to demonstrate the importance of the arts in moulding a nation.

Following this talk will be two special sessions of "Sights and Sounds of Chinese Opera" at the Chinese Opera Teahouse at 5 Smith Street in Chinatown on 12 & 13 June 2015 (Friday & Saturday) at 7.00 pm with dinner followed by showtime at 8.00 pm. The session will be conducted in English with a brief talk, and demonstration of basic opera gestures and movements, and ending with performance of a short Cantonese Opera excerpt with English subtitles. Artists will pose with patrons for photographs at no extra cost. This programme is targeted towards the tourists and the English educated. Admission is $40.00 per person, and booking is required. Patrons may purchase tickets online at www.ctcopera.com.sg

There will be another two talks, also conducted by Leslie Wong, but in Cantonese, at the Drama Centre, National Library Building, level 3 Function Room, on 13 - 14 June 2015 (Saturday & Sunday) at 2.00 pm.

The talk on 13 June 2015 will focus on his new creative work "An Empress' Benevolence", a full length Cantonese Opera with the theme on peaceful coexistence, specially written by him to mark CTC's celebration of Singapore's Golden Jubilee. This is the first full length opera in the several hundred years of world history of Cantonese Opera. The opera analyses the causes and circumstances leading to the controversial scholar turned warrior Hong Cheng Zhou towards the end of the Ming Dynasty of China (AD 1368 - 1644) surrendering to the Manchu Empress Zhuang Fei, also another controversial character in the history of China, and helping the Manchus to build up the Qing Empire (AD 1644 - 1911). At this talk, See Too Hoi Siang and Frances Wong, lead actors of CTC assuming the roles of Hong Cheng Zhou and Zhuang Fei, will demonstrate singing of the theme song of this opera.

The talk on 14 June 2015 will focus on "Appreciation of Cantonese Music" in which Leslie Wong will explain the rudiments of Cantonese music and demonstrate how to appreciate this traditional music form, as well as the basic difference between the Chinese erhu and the western violin. At this talk, he will also introduce four pieces of his creative songs, namely, "A Tribute To Singapore", "An Ode To Chinese Theatre Circle", "Continue To Prosper, Singapore", and "The Poet Du Mu". Ms Kwan Siu Ping, veteran Cantonese Opera singer will demonstrate singing some of these pieces.

The five performances of the Festival will commence from 17 - 21 June 2015 beginning with a full length opera "A Scholar's Path To Success" by the 40 member Guangzhou Hong Dow Cantonese Opera Troupe, followed by two evenings of "Cantonese Opera Extravaganza" on 18 - 19 June 2015, and then the main highlight "An Empress' Benevolence" by CTC led by See Too Hoi Siang and Frances Wong. The Festival will end with a special musical performance "Cantonese Music Rhapsody" led by the China Cantonese music maestro Bu Can Rong with a combined orchestra comprising China and Singapore musicians, and splendid renditions of songs and music by CTC's and other homegrown practitioners and enthusiasts. The Festival programme is attached.

Ticket pricing is as follows: $10.00 for talks (Free Seating); for performances $50, $30, $20, & $10. Ticket prices do not include administrative fee. Senior Citizens above 60 years old, students, and holders of Passion Card entitled to 20% discount.

Online booking: www.botempus.com/ctc. Credit Card booking, please call 6100 2684 (Hotline)

All performances will be accompanied by Chinese and English subtitles, except “Cantonese Music Rhapsody” on 21 June 2015 when only Chinese surtitles will be used.

For enquiries, please call Chinese Opera Teahouse at 5 Smith Street, Chinatown, at Tel: 6323 4862 and 9630 2886; and Botempus Hotline 6100 2684.

Photo shows See Too Hoi Siang and Frances Wong Kum Yeng in “ An Empress’ benevolence”

There will be subtitles in both English and Chinese.

Sat Jun 13, 2015
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM SGT
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NLB Level 3
Standard (incl. handling fee) SOLD OUT $11.00
Venue Address
100 Victoria Street,
National Library Building Level 3,
Singapore 188064 Singapore
Room is on the 3rd Level of the National Library, and is accessible by the Lifts or Escalators
Chinese Theatre Circle