Beijing Opera is our national opera. It came into being after 1790 and has a history of over 200 years. Its music and singing came from Xipi and Erhuang in Anhui and Hubei. There are four main roles in Beijing Opera: Sheng, Dan, Jing and Chou. Beijing Opera is full of famous stories, beautiful facial paintings, wonderful gestures and fighting. Some of the stories are from history books, but most are from famous novels. The people in the stories usually can’t agree with each other.
They become angry, unhappy, sad and lonely. Sometimes they are frightened and worried. Then they find a way to make peace with each other. Everyone is usually happy in the end.
Beijing Opera is an important part of Chinese culture. In China it used to be popular with old people while young people didn’t like it very much. However, more young people are becoming interested in it nowadays. And more people around the world are learning about Beijing Opera’s special singing, acting and facial paintings.