Starting in December 2019, Chinese Performing Arts will report regularly on Chinese contemporary theatre. Chinese performing arts will be presented to a wider international audience, especially as information and debates in China are often not known due to language barriers. The magazine is aimed not only at academics and professionals, but also at those with a general interest in theatre and Chinese culture.
The Shanghai Theatre Academy (STA) is an art university, the largest and oldest in China, with over 3000 students. The educational programs, especially for theatre and theatrical arts (but also e.g. film) have a very high level in China. As a result, Chinese Performing Arts focuses on Chinese theatrical and theatrical arts, artists and other activities. In the future, other areas such as dance, musicals, etc. will also be included.
The main focus of Chinese Performing Arts is on studies of artists, theatres, theatre troupes, short history of drama and XiQu (so-called Chinese opera) as well as introductions to classics and the current situation of theatre.
The articles are written either by professors or by young scholars from all over China. In the future, foreign scientists and experts will also be invited, as the aim of the STA is on the one hand to bring the Chinese culture of the performing arts closer to an international audience, but above all to establish a dialogue.
In this first issue you will find four scientific articles about Mei Lanfang, the world-famous master of Jingju (Beijing Opera). His encounter with Brecht and other outstanding artists in Moscow in 1935 and his influence on Brecht, for example, are well known. In order to give a more in-depth account of Chinese drama and theatre, this issue contains several introductory articles on the history of Xiqu (so-called traditional Chinese opera) and on the emergence of other forms of XiQu, such as Jingju, etc. The articles are also available in German. To illustrate the influence of Mei Lanfang in China today, there is an article about one of the most famous contemporary actresses who continues his style.
Although China has a long history of the performing arts, Chinese Performing Arts does not focus on the history of performance art in China, but mainly on contemporary performance art.
Therefore, readers will find articles about the current situation in China, including introductions about professional troops and institutions, etc. To also satisfy the interest and demand of many who are not familiar with Chinese performing arts, there is a column of today’s so-called “masterpieces”, i.e. works that are outstanding according to Chinese criteria, in both subjects, Xiqu, the so-called Chinese opera and Huaju, the spoken drama, since the founding of the People’s Republic of China. It also contains reviews of the theatre activities in China in the respective year.