Second Visit to Imperial Concubine Li;二进宫

The clip shows a famous trio among a qingyi (Blue-gown role is a sub-category of dan), a laosheng (old male, sub-category of sheng) and a painted-face roles. In the story, the Emperor has died while the crown prince is only a baby. Imperial Concubine Li’s father wants to usurp the throne. Under Li’s orders, the two loyal ministers Xu Yanzhao (painted face) and Yang Bo (laosheng) enter the palace again to discuss how to deal with the potential Coup d'état.

Second Visit to Imperial Concubine Li exemplifies the civilian play in the traditional repertoire.

Note that each character of the painted-face role types has his own facial pattern and colour to follow. Xu Yanzhao in the clip is a loyal minister and thus the red/purple colour symbolises his honesty and sophistication.

Also note that the colour of apricot-yellow is traditionally a royal colour.

The clip is taken from a performance for the project of “Sound Matching Image”, which makes audio-visual records by matching master performer’s previous gramophone records with young actors’ performances. The purpose of the project was to rescue the jingju art. After some years of experiments, the Tianjin Chinese Culture Promotion Council (Zhonghua Wenhua Cujinhui) produced 355 jingju productions involving about 20,000 practitioners nationwide between 1994 and 2002.


Audience Type
Second Visit to Imperial Concubine Li;二进宫: , 1994