UNITED NATIONS, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- A lecture on Peking Opera was given by Mei Baojiu, the son of Chinese theater mogul Mei Lanfang, at the UN headquarters on Thursday.
Mei Baojiu, now in his eighties, presented an interesting and detailed introduction of Peking Opera and the influence of Mei Lanfang's Jingju (Peking Opera) performance art on theatrical performance around the world.
"The greatest difference between our theater and Western theater and opera, is just the conventionality," he said, pointing out Jingju's characterizing features including fluidity, flexibility, sculpturability and conventionality.
He said that Mei Lanfang's performance had a deep influence on the development of other schools of the theater throughout the world. "Such influence emanates from the characteristics of Jingju, an art form that is considered the quintessence of Chinese culture."
"Mei Lanfang's contribution to world theatrical performance was profound, encompassing our understanding of the relationship between the performer, the character, and the audience," said Mei Baojiu, who is his father's artistic heir and one of China's top performers of Jingju.
Michael Rose, Editorial, Terminology, and Reference Service Chief of UN Department for General Assembly and Conference Management, said that Mei Lanfang was considered not only as a performer of the Peking Opera , but also an ambassador of Chinese art and culture.
"Back in the 1920s," he said prior to the lecture, "the best Beijing Opera master ever, Mr. Mei Lanfang amazed the whole world during his trip to the United States, where he showcased the beauty and charm of Peking Opera."
Mei Lanfang created a unique style known as the "Mei School." He toured the United States from December 1929 to June 1930, leading his Jingju troupe to perform in eight cities in an effort to introduce the art of Peking Opera, which is the most representative and most influential stage form in China.
Thursday's event is part of the U.S. tour by the Jingju Theater Company of Beijing. With performances in New York and Washington D.C., the tour is to commemorate the 120th anniversary of Mei Lanfang's birth.