The action-packed performance shows off Peking Opera as one of the most dynamic forms of the theater in the world. It blends singing and dialogue with acrobatic tumbling, kung-fu fighting, brilliant costumes that sparkle with silk brocades and faces painted with bright, stylized masks. Peking Opera has been called “an artistic ocean” — the only art form that encapsulates Chinese culture, history, literature, music, dance, acrobatics, stage fighting and acting with the specialty arts of face painting and elaborate costumery.
“Peking Opera: Monkey King” draw on the fables of the Monkey King, the greatest of all Chinese myth cycles. The story was collected in the 16th-century novel Journey to the West by Wu Cheng’en. The adventures in this performance is “Havoc in Heaven.” This episode is chosen for its excitement and action, and because the story is easy to follow for an audience unfamiliar with these legends, though the legends are as familiar to most Chinese as “The Wizard of Oz” is to most Americans.