National opera Yimeng Mountain to debut in Jinan
The main creators of the national opera Yimeng Mountain gave Jinan residents of what to expect during a rehearsal on Dec 16 at the Shandong Provincial Grand Theatre in Jinan, capital of Shandong province, ahead of its debut performances on Dec 19 and 20.
The opera was created by the Shandong Song and Dance Theatre in October 2016. It aims to showcase the outstanding contributions and great sacrifices made by the Yimeng Mountain villagers who were representing the Shandong people in the Chinese revolution.
It is a literary work with red themes that eulogizes the Party, the motherland, the people and the heroes, and reflects the highest level of Shandong's stage art development.
During its two years of creation, its creators went to Yimeng Mountain six times to gain inspiration. They visited the former site of Shandong provincial government, the former site of the 115th Division of the Eighth Route Arm, Yimeng Revolutionary Memorial Hall, Daqingshan Battle Memorial Hall, the Museum of Heroic Women in Yimeng and Yuanziya Martyrs Cemetery numerous times to sample local life.
They had discussions with local scholars, research experts, old veterans and descendants of heroic women. They relived the heroic deeds of revolutionary martyrs, and gained a perspective of Yimeng people’s confrontation with the Party and infinite loyalty to the military, which laid a solid foundation for the creation.
The play was written by Wang Xiaoling and Li Wenxu, directed by Huang Dingshan and composed by Yu Kai. It invited famous singers including Wang Lida, Wang Chuanliang, Zhang Zhuo, Jin Zhengjian, Yang Xiaoyong, Jiang Ning and Lei Yan to play the main roles and set up a first-class team of performers.
Zhang Guilin, deputy director of Shandong provincial department of culture and tourism, served as the artistic director of the opera.
"Yimeng Mountain is a symbol of red land where there are lots of touching stories. In the 12 years of revolutionary war, among the 4.2 million people in Yimeng Mountain, more than 1.2 million people supported the army, more than 200,000 people joined the army and fought in battle, and more than 100,000 soldiers died on the battlefield. The Yimeng army and civilians erected towering monuments with blood and life," he said.
"The spirit of the military and the people being in perfect harmony and sharing life and death is the core of our creation. Telling inspirational red stories in the new age and promoting the Yimeng spirit is the original intention of our creation," he added.
The opera has been jointly produced by the Publicity Department of the CPC Shandong Provincial Committee, Shandong Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism, Linyi Municipal Party Committee and the Linyi Municipal People's Government.
After debuting in Jinan, it will be staged in Fujian for a national folk opera performance and in Linyi for a special show at later dates.
Stage still of the national opera Yimeng Mountain during a rehearsal on Dec 16 at the Shandong Provincial Grand Theatre in Jinan, Shandong province. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Stage still of the national opera Yimeng Mountain during a rehearsal on Dec 16 at the Shandong Provincial Grand Theatre in Jinan. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Creators of the national opera Yimeng Mountain give an interview on Dec 16 at the Shandong Provincial Grand Theatre in Jinan, Shandong province. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]