Peking opera (3 actors, 2 musicians) and 2-channel electronic

50 min
text, choreography: Zhang Chunxiang
comissioned by Shinchogekiin
Edition Juliane Klein


  • world premiere: Zhang Chunxiang+Shinchogekiin, 4. internationales Tanzfestival Theater X [cai] Tokio, Japan 2000

programme note

The 50 min lasting piece "Kangan" for Peking Opera and electronic music was a comission of the "4th International Dance Festival Theater X [cai] Tokyo 2000" about the pantomime "the miraculous mandarin" of Melchior Lengyel. The German composer (with a background of European classical music) communicated in Japanese with the Chinese Director, Actors and Musicians (with a traditional education in the classical Peking Opera), working together with the Japanese translation of the in Chinese written textbook about the Pantomime of the Hungarian author Melchior Lengyel. The music for the instrumentalists and singer was selected from traditional Peking Opera material, discussed and explained without any score by singing and playing, and still leaving a lot of unanswered questions by the composer. Not only the music of the Peking Opera impressed the composer, but also the "music" of the complete not understood Chinese text and the music interpretation of the Hungarian Bela Bartok, wich was premiered more than 80 years before in Cologne and is part of his cultural background. Samples of Peking Opera music and Bartok's "the miraculous mandarin" are the material of the electronic music part of "Kangan", a second layer to the music by the Peking opera members, wich was to them probably even more strange than their music to the German composer.
(Peter Gahn)