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Shaoxing Opera Festival kicks off in Wenzhou

It was a busy weekend in Wenzhou for arts and entertainment, as the coastal city saw the opening of the third Shaoxing Opera Festival. The event showcases one of the country’s most prized forms of opera from one of its ancient birthplaces.

20 performance troupes from across China will take part in the 17-day festival. The event brings together the top performers in its class, the event will stage classic Shaoxing Opera pieces like “The moon’s reflection in Erquan spring”, “The King of the Desert” and the “Peony Pavilion”.

Tickets to the performances used to be free in past festivals, but organizers this year are going to offer tickets ranging in price from $3 to $30.

The hope is that offering tickets at different prices, will create a market that will hopefully attract more opera goers in the future.

Despite going from free to a small fee, opera-goers aren’t deterred with 80% of tickets already being sold.

The festival has also arranged performances by 20 opera troupes run by private organizations and 6 competitions between amateur opera lovers. Organizers hope to not just entertain audiences but also to encourage interaction and participation. The performers will also visit schools, public squares and neighbourhoods, to meet and interact with the people they work so hard to entertain.

The event was conceived in 2002, and is held every four years. This year’s festival is running in Wenzhou, one of the earliest birthplaces of Chinese opera, until October 28th. So come see the shows before it’s too late.