Strategy of an Empty Town (Jingju);空城计(京剧)

Strategy of an Empty Town is a story in the famous Chinese novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguo yanyi), attributed to Luo Guanzhong (circa 1330-1400AD), set in the most chaotic years at the end of the Han dynasty (206 BC-220 AD) and the Three Kingdoms (220-265 AD) period. Zhuge Liang, the Prime Minister of the Shu Kingdom, is known as the most accomplished strategist of the era. In this play, he knows that Sima Yi and his army (of the Wei Kingdom) are approaching while his generals and soldiers are deployed miles away. Thus he orders all the gates to be opened, instructs two old soldiers to sweep the streets, and arranges for himself to sit on the viewing platform above the city wall playing a zither accompanied by two page boys. Since Zhuge is famous for being a careful military tactician who hardly takes risks, Sima’s fear of ambush prevents him from entering the city. He retreats. When he realizes that he might have been deceived and returns to the gate, Zhuge’s army has already arrived.


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Strategy of an Empty Town (Jingju);空城计(京剧):