Chinese Folk Art

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Chinese Folk Art

Chinese folk art are artistic forms inherited from a regional or ethnic scene in China. Usually there are some variation between provinces

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Eight Treasures of the Bouyei Eight Treasures of the Bouyei
The Bouyei are the indigenous residents living in southeast Yunnan and Guizhou Plateau. As early as the Stone Age, they were living and working there. Sharing the same origin with the Zhuang, the Bouyei is a branch of the ancient Baiyue ethnic group. By now, they still keep some customs and habits of the ancient Baiyue group. The Bouyei has a splendid culture and various art forms, among which the "Eight Treasures" are the most distinc... More
“Lurigele” Dance of the Daur “Lurigele” Dance of the Daur
 “Lurigele” Dance is a traditional hunting dance form of the Daur ethnic group, taking a circle formation and imitating animal and bird calls. There are three parts of the dance. Part one is for singing competition, singing primarily and dancing secondly. Part two is for dancing competition, dancing primarily and singing secondly. Part three is for fighting, shouting with arms up and fighting to win. This folk dance is a “... More
"Feitao" Dance of the Maonan Minority "Feitao" Dance of the Maonan Minority
"Wish-Redeeming Dance", called "Feitao" in the Maonan language, is a general term of Maonan's activities related to redeeming a wish or other activities. It was prevalent during the transition from the Ming to Qing Dynasty. The dance was originally a ritual of Maonan to use exorcising opera to offer sacrifice to the heaven, the earth and all natural creatures. During the process when it was passed down generation by generatio... More
A Cultural Symbol - Chinas New Year Picture A Cultural Symbol - Chinas New Year Picture
Spring Festival, China's most celebrative occasion, begins its annual felicitations with the posting of New Year pictures on the walls and windows on the 24th of the 12th month in the lunar calendar according to tradition. The pictures convey people's jubilation and expectations of the coming new year. However, in a century of rapid globalization, how many traditions have been lucky enough to survive? Is the New Year picture bound to disappear ... More
A Famous Ballad--Jasmine Flower A Famous Ballad--Jasmine Flower
China is a vast country with a long history and diverse nationalities, and therefore there are a great number of widespread ballads and folk songs. Among them, Jasmine Flower stands out for its beautiful and catchy tune. It's so popular that nearly everyone can hum along.Jasmine Flower has been a hit across the country since ancient times. There may be some variations of the ballad, but the version popular in the lower reach of the south of the ... More
Acrobatics in the Tang Dynasty -  skills amid music and dance Acrobatics in the Tang Dynasty - skills amid music and dance
The 300-year period in Chinese history from the Wei and Jin Dynasty (220-420) to the Southern and Northern Dynasty(386-581), witnessed great social turmoil and an intensive cultural amalgamation amongst various ethnic groups. The Sui Dynasty (581-618) unified China in 589, and Chinese acrobatics reached maturity, becoming a popular performing art with both the rulers and common people during the Tang Dynasty (618-907). Acrobats often performed w... More
Aites of the Kazak Aites of the Kazak
Kazak Aites is a typical folk art of the Kazak ethnic group and a contest-type performance of antiphonal singing. It is the literature genre with richest content among folk oral literature of Kazak and has exerted the greatest influence on the general public. Its traditional programs mainly express the history, culture and emotion of the Kazaks. It is full of dense features of Kazak oral literature and music from lines to lyrics. It has extraord... More
Ancient Songs of the Miao Minority Ancient Songs of the Miao Minority
Ancient Songs of the Miao Minority is the myth of poetic style that takes creation as its main contents. It is popular in the residence area of Miao, an ethnic group of China. The folk oral literary work is an epic created by the ancestors of the Miao people in their long time of production and work. The contents of Ancient Songs of the Miao Minority are very vast, from the emergence of the universe, the origination of human beings and all the s... More
Andai Dance - the most popular dance of the Mongolian ethnic group Andai Dance - the most popular dance of the Mongolian ethnic group
On the boundless pasture in North China, there live the Chinese herdsmen -- the Mongolian ethnic minority. They love the grassland, love dancing and singing. The Mongolian people created a lot of dances and music, of which the most famous one is Andai Dance. Andai is also called "jumping white hawk". There was a legend about the origin of the Andai. It is said that once upon a time, there were a father and a daughter. The daughter was ... More
Anshun Dixi Drama Anshun Dixi Drama
Dixi Drama, usually called "sorcerer's dance in a trance ", is a kind of local drama spreading in Anshun City of Guizhou Province, whose birth is closely related to the station troops in Anshun who came from Anhui Province, Jiangsu Province, Jiangxi Province, Zhejiang Province, Henan Province, etc. The Ming troop set up 24 Military Stations (wei,卫) and 26 Thousand-household Garrisons (suo,所) in Guizhou, among which 3 stations and 2 gar... More
Auspicious melody from the Tianshan Mountain - Uygur music Auspicious melody from the Tianshan Mountain - Uygur music
The most celebrated music in Xinjiang today is Uygur folk music, which has inherited the fine traditions of the ancient music of Qiuci, Gaochang (Karahoja),Yizhou, Shule and Yutian. Due to the particular geography of Xinjiang and the constant influence of one culture on another, musical styles have developed along different paths over the years, and each tradition is typical of its locality. There are three distinct styles of Xinjiang music: Sou... More
Auspicious Motifs Auspicious Motifs
Traditional Chinese auspicious motifs first appeared in the Zhou Dynasty, some 3,000 years ago. They later became widely popular among the general public. On every Spring Festival or other holidays, people would decorate their rooms and articles with these auspicious motifs to express their wishes for happy life and to celebrate the happy holiday. As a key component of traditional Chinese culture, the auspicious motifs are one of the symbols use... More
Ballad of Liu Sanjie Ballad of Liu Sanjie
The ballad of Liu Sanjie (Third Sister in the Liu family) is a type of folk song prevalent in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Yizhou City is the representative region where this type of ballad is prevailing. Hence it is identified as the hometown of Liu Sanjie.As a legendary figure in folklores of the Zhuang minority, Liu Sanjie was said to be extraordinarily bright as a child who was capable of singing about every object she pointed at. Due t... More
Bashan Beierge Bashan Beierge
Bashan Bei'erge (Song of Bashan Back-carriers) is a folk song form born and popular in area under the jurisdiction of Bazhong City, which is at the southern foot of Mount Micang in northeastern Sichuan Province. In the past, the area was inaccessible, so all goods in and out of the mountain were carried by men. These men were called "Beilaoer" or "Bei'erge" (back-carriers), so the song they sang while taking a break during th... More
Basic Characteristics of Chinese Folk Arts Basic Characteristics of Chinese Folk Arts
Chinese folk art is a visual art created by ordinary people to meet ordinary social needs.The definition of folk art is relative to the definition of the art of imperial palace, the art of aristocrats, and the art of scholars and of the literati, or professional artists. Firstly, it is a communal art created by millions in the working class, not the work of a few career artists. It is the art of the laborers, not die professionals; it is amateur... More
Blessings and Happiness: Hidden Meanings in Chinese Folk Art Blessings and Happiness: Hidden Meanings in Chinese Folk Art
Chinese folk art reflects the long history of popular customs and traditions in Chinese culture. Deeply rooted in agriculture, people’s daily life and rituals are inevitably connected with nature, the surrounding landscape, and the various captivating tales told from one generation to another about the origin of the world, mankind, and mythological beings that once roamed the earth. The handicrafts and objects created by the common folks f... More
Buluotuo Scriptures Buluotuo Scriptures
Buluotuo Scriptures is the primitive religious scriptures of the Zhuang ethnic group of China. It is also the creative epic and folk literary work of the Zhuang ethnics. The scriptures are the five-word style poem that takes the language and form of poem to sing and praise the feat of creating the earth and the heaven, initiating all the things, arranging the orders of the universe and constituting ethic of Bulongtuo, the ancient god of the Zhua... More
Cantonese opera singing: no worry even if you cannot understand Cantonese opera singing: no worry even if you cannot understand
Cantonese opera singing means Guangdong melodies. The music is delicate, sweet, tender and soft. It is an important member of the family of Chinese quyi Sung in the GuangZhou, or Cantonese, dialect, it is popular in Guangdong Province, the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Hong Kong and Macao. In addition, it has spread to Southeast Asia and North America, where overseas Chinese of Guangdong origin have settled in large numbers. The source of Ca... More
Chinese Folk Arts and Philosophy Chinese Folk Arts and Philosophy
Chinese folk art is vastly different from Western traditional art in philosophy concept, art structure and form, and color composition.Philosophy concept - Chinese folk art, and the art of Chinese officialdom and professional artists share the same philosophy base. They are rooted in the same comprehension that heaven and human, objects and subjects are of one entity; and they are based on the same cosmic ontology. However, folk art is a continu... More
Chinese Mouth Organs Chinese Mouth Organs
Also known as "harmonica" or "bamboo reed", Chinese mouth organ is a folk musical instrument enjoyed a long history. It comes in various shapes and sizes. The instrument is popular among a dozen or so ethnic groups, such as Yi, Lahu, Naxi, Lisu, Dai and Han. A Chinese mouth organ can be played as a solo, unison or ensemble performance. It also provides ideal accompaniment to singing and dancing. The instrument plays an import... More
Chinese Quyi: the body also talks Chinese Quyi: the body also talks
Just like drama, Quyi also pays much attention to the maneuver of "Hand, Eyes, Body and Step in performance. Hand, Eyes, Body and Step here refer to a performer's expressions and movements that accompany his singing and reciting in the performance. Hand refers to gestures the performer uses to present story plots. Gestures can indicate distance, height and directions, assimilate quantity and shape of an object, and describe physique, charac... More
Chinese Shadow Play--Precursor of Modern Cinema Chinese Shadow Play--Precursor of Modern Cinema
March 24, 2009 -- Shadow play, a traditional Chinese folk art with a history of more than 2,000 years, has embarked on a revival path after a period of marked decline, thanks to conservation efforts and lasting interest in rural areas.   Known as a precursor of modern cinema, shadow play is a kind of drama in which silhouettes made of hard paper, buffalo and donkey hide are projected onto a white screen. The performer manipulates the c... More
Chuanju Chuanju
Popular in Sichuan, Guizhou and Yunnan, Chuanju (Sichuan opera) is the major form of local opera in southwestern China. A combination of several local opera forms, such as kunqu, gaoqiang, huqin, tanxi and dengxi, it developed around the middle of the Qing Dynasty. Its most characteristic feature is its high-pitched singing style. The repertoire is very rich, totaling over two thousand items. The scripts are of high literary value and are noted ... More
Cigarette Case Dance of Yi Ethnic Group Cigarette Case Dance of Yi Ethnic Group
Cigarette case dance of Yi ethnic group in Shiping, also known as "tiaoxian" or "longzong", is a kind of folk dance loved by the people of Nisupo tribe of Yi ethnic group. It goes around Gejiu, Shiping, Jianshui, Mengzi, Kaiyuan, Tonghai, Yuanjiang and other places in the south of Yunnan where the Yi people live in a compact community, and it realized maturity in the Yuan and Ming Dynasty and reached its zenith in the Qing Dy... More
City Ballads in Shanghai Dialect City Ballads in Shanghai Dialect
Nowadays in Shanghai, you can hear a great variety of music and operas from all over the world, such as the traditional Beijing Opera and Kunqu Opera, the rhythmic and dynamic hip-hop, the elegant and melancholy Jazz or Blues, etc. While the sounds all across the world permeate the air of the municipality, it should be noticed that Shanghai has its own folk songs, which were born in the fields or at the dock. These ballads, based on daily life, ... More
Creators of Chinese Folk Arts Creators of Chinese Folk Arts
The creators of Chinese folk art come from millions of laborers among the People. They include both "the dexterous-hands" who engage in agricultural labor and the folk crafts - persons who have been completely or partly out of the agricultural labor. These folk artists have contributed to the handing-down and development of the Chinese culture through their works. ... More
Cuotaiji of Yi Ethnic Group Cuotaiji of Yi Ethnic Group
Cuotaiji is a kind of ancient drama that only exists in Luoga stockaded village in Bandi Town of Weining Yi, Hui and Miao Autonomous County of Guizhou Province." Cuotaiji" is the transliteration of the equivalent in Yi language of Bandi Town. In Yi language, "cuo" means human being or ghost, "tai" means change and "ji" means playing games and disporting, so "cuotaiji" is usually translated to &qu... More
Dai Opera: Chinas Intangible Cultural Heritage Dai Opera: Chinas Intangible Cultural Heritage
A local villager makes face-painting before rehearsing Dai opera in Fengping Town, Luxi City of the Dai and Jingpo Ethnic Autonomous Prefecture of Dehong in southwest China's Yunnan Province, Dec.16, 2007. Dai opera is a unique ethnic opera in Yunnan Province, which goes round mainly in the Dai and Jingpo Ethnic Autonomous Prefecture of Dehong. It has been put on China's Intangible Cultural Heritage List in the year of 2006. Local villagers... More
Dance on the plateau - Yishunbian of Tibetan Ethnic Group Dance on the plateau - Yishunbian of Tibetan Ethnic Group
The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, known as "the roof of the world", is filled with far-stretching mountains, lofty icy peaks and precipitous deep valleys. The Himalayas, the world's highest peak Everest, Gangdisi Mountains and the Buddhism sacred "Gangrenboqi" Peak are all found here. The mysterious plateau atmosphere helps bring forth people's pious religious belief. Yishunbian (Hand and Foot Moving in the Same Way) requires the da... More
Dances of Qiang Ethnic Group Dances of Qiang Ethnic Group
History, culture and traditions of an ethnic group are preserved basically in three ways, including records in writing and cultural relics, oral presentations (poetry or music etc.), and also physical embodiment. As a nation replete with historical and cultural details, Qiang people don't have a script which has taken shape by now. Therefore, they have passed down and preserved most of their primary culture relatively intact in oral and physical... More
Daoqing Play Daoqing Play
The Daoqing Play is a folk operetta popular in the Yellow River Valley. It originated from the chanting of Taoist scriptures in the Tang Dynasty, and developed into the folk art form of Daoqing dagu in the Song Dynasty in which singing alternated with narration. During the Qianlong Period of the Qing Dynasty, the singing and story-telling Daoqing Play which was popular in northern Shanxi was put on the stage, and became a type of drama favored b... More
Dong ethnic group: singing folk songs with tree leaves Dong ethnic group: singing folk songs with tree leaves
Tree leaves are musical instruments which are available everywhere for the Dong; and the melody from blowing leaves is a kind of folk music created in the laboring life of the Dong, which makes use of folk songs of the Dong nationality as keys and of delicate leaves of Qinggang, Huagang and camellia leaves as instrument; and put such leaves tenderly on lips to toot melodious and sweet tune. Particularly when an excellent vocalist of tree leaves ... More
Dongba Art Dongba Art
Dongba Art is the primitive religious art special of the Naxi ethnics who live in the frontier area of southwest China and believe in Dongba religion. Dongba religion got its name from the fact that the priest of the religion is called "Dongba" by the people of the ethnic group. The religion has exerted very great influence on the material and spiritual lives of the Naxi people since ancient times. It has given birth to the time-honore... More
Eagle Dance of the Tajik Ethnic Group Eagle Dance of the Tajik Ethnic Group
Tajik is one of ancient ethnic groups in China and lives mainly in Tajik Autonomous Region of Tashkurghan, Xinjiang. Others are distributed in Shache, Yecheng, Zepu and other counties east to Tajik. They regard eagle as the strong and hero. There are many folk songs and legends about eagle. Even the origin of dance is linked with the habit and movements of eagle. Hence, the "eagle dance" is shaped.Eagle dance is a traditional self-ente... More
Emotions that have been blown out, plucked out and played out Emotions that have been blown out, plucked out and played out
Traditional Shanghai music diversifies in variety: based on an abundance of folk ballads and operas, the music has blended in folk wisdoms, displaying a flourishing scene of "all flowers blossoming". The daily life of the Shanghainese is filled with joy, anger, grief and happiness, which can be perceived through the melody of the local music. ... More
Emperor GeSaer Emperor GeSaer
Emperor GeSaer is a folk epic work that is popular in the residence area of the ethnic groups such as Zang, Meng, Naxi and so on in the Tibetan Plateau of China. It has been sung for a thousand years. By means of oral transmission, the epic narrates the glorious achievements of the hero Emperor GeSaer after he was befell in the world of man. Characterized by long history, magnificent structure and abundant contents, it is the crystallization of ... More
Errenzhuan of Northeast China Errenzhuan of Northeast China
Also known as "Hop-Hop", Errenzhuan (a kind of folk song-dance duet) is a folk art with strong local flavor featuring ballad singing and dancing popular in Jilin, Liaoning and Heilongjiang Provinces and Xing’an League, Hulun Buir, Tongliao and Chifeng Cities of Inner Mongolia.Errenzhuan dates back more than 300 years. The early form of Errenzhuan was the nighttime singing of ballads popular in northeast China by performers who wo... More
Ethnic Embroidery of Qiang: A Miracle in Chinese Folk Art Ethnic Embroidery of Qiang: A Miracle in Chinese Folk Art
Qiang ethnic minority is one ancient nation in our Chinese ethnic family. For thousands of years, together with the other members of our big folk family, the ethnic minority of Qiang have created the Chinese nation's great splendid civilizations. From the nomadic times to the farming times, from ancient times until today, The Qiang nation has experienced countless glory and honor, also suffered from hardships and tribulations. They always keep t... More
Exorcizing Dance Exorcizing Dance
Commonly called "the ghost opera" or "the ghost dance", the exorcizing dance is a kind of dance originated from the ancient exorcizing culture. It is honored as "the living fossil of Chinese dance". The exorcizing dance derived from the totem worship of the clan society in ancient times. Originally, it was a dance believed capable of driving away ghosts performed at sacrificial exorcizing rituals. Later, the dance g... More
Face changing Face changing
Face changing is a stunt of performance in opera arts and is a romantic technique to reveal the innermost feelings of characters in the play. According to the legend, the ancients painted different patterns on their faces to scare away fierce beasts for survival, thus the "face changing art". Sichuan Opera uses "face changing technique" on the stage and transforms it into a special art with stunning skills. "Face changin... More
FengYang Flower Drum FengYang Flower Drum
Known for its flower-drum performance, Fengyang is the birthplace of Zhu Yuanzhang, the first emperor of the Ming Dynasty. As a folk performance of singing and dancing in Fengyang County of Anhui Province, "Fengyang Flower Drum" has been passed down. In terms of its forms, "Fengyang Flower Drum" can be divided into Flower Drum Lantern, Flower Drum Play and Flower Drum Gong. Altogether the three are entitled "Fengyang Flo... More
Fire Cat Dance of the Zhuang Minority Fire Cat Dance of the Zhuang Minority
The fire cat dance is a sacrificial dance unique to the Zhuang ethnic people in Wuzhou area of Guangxi. It is performed as a ritual to keep mice away from harvested grain. In the dance, dozens of young men and women play "cats" and "cat gods". Donning colorful cat fur-like dresses with stripes, they wear headbands made of straw, with a straw plait shaped like a cat's tail at the back and a "cat face" mask over the f... More
Five Gongdiao of Haizhou Five Gongdiao of Haizhou
In ancient times, Lianyungang City of Jiangsu Province was called Haizhou. Gongdiao of Haizhou refers to an art form of singing in successive tunes, which is popular in Lianyungang City and its surrounding areas. It comprises several basic tune-patterns including [Ruanping], [Dieluo], [Lidiao], [Nandiao], and [Boyang]. It is an art form sang by Qupai Cluster.With a long history, Five Gongdiao of Haizhou is an important school of popular music in... More
Flying cymbal in Hangu - Cell phone of ancient fishermen Flying cymbal in Hangu - Cell phone of ancient fishermen
What is a flying cymbal? As a means of communication adopted by ancient fishermen, it is similar to the mobile phone today. In those days, when the fishermen went fishing on the sea, they needed to keep in contact and transfer information to one another. Then the smart fishermen resorted to the flying cymbal. With clear sound and a wide range of transmission, the cymbal was very useful on the sea. As a result, there were flying cymbals in every ... More
Folk Arts and Festivities - Chinese New Year Folk Arts and Festivities - Chinese New Year
Scene of Chinese New Year festivity inside the cave in northern Shaanxi.Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, is the biggest holiday in China. Recorded in Li Ji - Yue Ling, Chinese New Year is the time when "air pressure of the sky comes down and air pressure of earth goes up. When heaven and earth connects, all things geminate." This summarizes the main features of folk art works on Chinese New year, which are heaven an... More
Folk Arts and Festivities - The Dragon Boat Festival Folk Arts and Festivities - The Dragon Boat Festival
The dragon boat festival is a totem festival. Falling on the 5th of the fifth lunar month, it is close to the summer solstice. Pestilence, as a result of the heat and dampness, is at its worst, threatening lives of human community. Images of legendary animals and totem animals are pasted on the door or carried along for safeguard. Inevitably, the theme of art works for this festival is awareness of life and safety.Folk paper-cut the "Eight ... More
Folk Arts and Festivities - The Mid-Autumn Festival Folk Arts and Festivities - The Mid-Autumn Festival
Chinese folk custom believes that spring is the time to worship and fall to pay back. Spring worship welcomes all saints from heaven and earth, mainly god of the sun; and fall payback is to pay tribute to the generous, load carrying mother earth at the end of a harvest year. To offer respect to the land, the moon, and mother's body is a humane culture extended from matriarchal society. Eating moon cake is a palatable custom of the Mid-Autumn Fes... More
Folk Arts and Festivities - The Pure Brightness Festival Folk Arts and Festivities - The Pure Brightness Festival
The Pure Brightness Festival is the time when Chinese worship nature and their ancestors. To worship ancestors is the centerpiece of the art works on the subject.A society of natural farming economy employed slash-and-burn cultivation, burning mountains and destroying forest. Spring was a time when grass and trees start sprouting. To keep a balanced ecology and to preserve a better living environment was a necessity to human being's own survival... More
Folk Arts in Beliefs and Taboos Folk Arts in Beliefs and Taboos
Human lives were often threatened by irresistible natural or man-made vicious power. At the time when a society was scientifically undeveloped, humans were even more confined in their understanding of the universe. As a result, people believed that there was an invisible world of ghosts, evil spirits, demons and monsters that could harm human life; on the other hand, they also believed that there was a supernatural power that could help conquer ... More
Folk Arts in Daily Life - Cuisine Folk Arts in Daily Life - Cuisine
The culture of Chinese cuisine also embodies original Chinese philosophy concept. The art form that represents this culture comes in two folds, geometry form and form of nature, which mainly consists of animal figures.Chinese New Year meal — eating dumplings, Wonton and grain twister on the first of the lunar year.Wonton and grain twister."Da Guo Kui", a special food product of Shandong, with a facial pattern as a symbol of the r... More
Folk Arts in Daily Life - Dress and Adornment Folk Arts in Daily Life - Dress and Adornment
Embroidery art in dress and adornment also embodies original Chinese Philosophy. Likening human body to the universe, the upper part (the head) is the sky, the lower part (the feet) is earth, and the middle (the pubic area) is the center. The understanding of this leads to the culture implication of Chinese dress and adornment.Many folk dress and adornment are designed as philosophy symbols. It is a custom for women in northern Shaanxi to wear a... More
Folk Arts in Daily Life - Residential Building Folk Arts in Daily Life - Residential Building
Pottery miniature courtyard among the burials during the Three Kingdom Period (220-280) unearthed from Echeng Hubei, showing ancient Chinese residential building in five elements and eight diagram styles.Residential building featuring four quarters with a center skylight to represent the Jive element universal view in Kunming, Yunnan.Chinese residential architecture also embodies original Chinese philosophy. The basic style for residential archi... More
Folk Arts in Daily Life - Travel Folk Arts in Daily Life - Travel
The theme of transportation is to "Travel Safe." Art works for decoration on vehicles and horses are mostly symbols of "good luck" or an "eight diagram."At Maojin ferry, Henan on the Yellow River Mid-stream, an area where monkey totem is idolized, a decorative monkey totem is placed on the mast tip of all boats that sail in the Yellow River. A line underneath reads: "The general is a trailblazer; and the lieute... More
Folk Song of Lisu Ethnic Group Folk Song of Lisu Ethnic Group
The folk song is very popular in the Lisu ethnic group, which is reflected in the saying that "Salt is indispensable in meals, and singing is indispensable in life". The folk songs are simple and impressive and they have plenty of tunes; most of the traditional dances are group dances, among which some simulate animals and some others represent the labor and life. In the daily life, Lisu people often ask questions by singing and the re... More
Folk Songs of Napo Zhuang Minority Folk Songs of Napo Zhuang Minority
Napo Zhuang minority is also called "Black-clothed Zhuang". It is the most peculiar branch of the Zhuang minority, who call themselves "Min" (agile), "Zhong" (second in seniority) and "ao" (the sound of wailing). Currently, it has about a population of 51,800. Since people of this minority are all dressed in black, they are called "Black-clothed Zhuang". They mainly live in Napo County of Guangxi... More
Folk Songs of She Ethnicity in Zhejiang Province Folk Songs of She Ethnicity in Zhejiang Province
As the only autonomous county of She Ethnicity all over the country, Jingning is also the birthplace of She people in Zhejiang Province. She folk songs are oral literature created during the production and life struggles of She people. It is the fruit of their wisdom, as well as an important component of She traditional culture. Most folk songs are preserved in She people's heads, and passed down orally from generation to generation. A portion o... More
Folk Songs of the Yugu Minority Folk Songs of the Yugu Minority
Yugu Autonomous County in South Gansu is located in the middle of the Hexi Corridor and the north foot of the Qilian Mountains. The Yugu minority, named Yaohu'er or Lianglayugu'er in their own language, is a very special ethnic group. It holds no obvious patriarchal concept of reproduction or distinct awareness of male superiority. The minority is also a romantic ethnic group. As its own written language has lost, its culture, its history in par... More
Foshan Wood Block New Year Picture Foshan Wood Block New Year Picture
It is popular in the south of China and produced in Foshan, Guangdong Province. It originated in the Yongle Period of the Ming Dynasty, flourished in the Qianlong Period and the Jiaqing Period of the Qing Dynasty. The picture shops were situated in the Water Lane and the Fulu Lane. Foshan New Year picture consists of three types: original picture, woodblock picture, and woodblock realistic picture. Its themes run a range of gate god, festival p... More
Gaoyou Folk Songs of Jiangsu Province Gaoyou Folk Songs of Jiangsu Province
Culturally, Jiangsu Province is characterized by "Wuyun Hanfeng" (literally, the appeal of south of the Yangtze River and the flavor of the Han Dynasty). In terms of the folk song, the characteristics are embodied in Wu songs of south Jiangsu and Chu songs of north Jiangsu. The two are totally different from each other. Wu songs are prevailing in Suzhou, Wuxi, Changzhou and Gaochun County of Nanjing. Of all the places, they are the mos... More
Gold peacock of the Dai ethnic group Gold peacock of the Dai ethnic group
As the most famous traditional folk dance of the Dai Minority in China, peacock dance is prevalent in the Dai and Jingpo minority autonomous prefectures as well as gathering areas of the Dai people. Legend has it that more than a thousand years ago, Zhaomali Jieshu, the head of the Dai minority, learned dance through imitating the elegant gestures of the peacock. The dance was afterwards promoted by later generations of folk dancers and went wid... More
Gong-drum Drama Gong-drum Drama
Gong-drum Drama is an age-old local recitative drama prevalent in Linyi, Wanrong and Hejin Counties in Shanxi Province. It is famous for singing without the accompaniment of stringed instruments, but merely gongs and drums. Gong-drum Drama is also known as "Longyan Drama" due to the custom that it is performed to requite deities in the first lunar month in Longyan Temple located in Linyi County.The exact era in which the Gong-drum Dram... More
Grand Songs of the Dong Ethnic Minority Grand Songs of the Dong Ethnic Minority
Also called "Galao" the Tong grand songs, called as such because they are sung by large groups of people, are a kind of folk music that originated in the Song Dynasty (960-1279). The songs are performed in male and female antistrophic form,and are usually sung during holidays in adrum toweror near a bonfire.Grand songs have various types, mainly: the narrative style, mainly about story plots and persona dialogues; the lyric style, main... More
Guarding the lights amid the melody of the Qiang flute Guarding the lights amid the melody of the Qiang flute
The Qiang flute is a kind of vertical flute that is made up of two 15-20cm-long bamboo pipes with holes of the same size wound together with silk threads. Mainly for solo performance, the flute is a folk music instrument with a bamboo reed at the end of the pipe. There are a dozen or so age-old flute tune patterns, with a large repertoire covering a wide range of subjects, most of which are expressive of the Qiang people's homesickness and yearn... More
Guozhuang Bonfire Dance in Tibet Guozhuang Bonfire Dance in Tibet
Guozhuang village is in Qamdo Prefecture, the east of Tibet autonomous region. Guozhuang bonfire dance is the most famous fork dance in Tibet.In the old time, when travelling merchants took rest at night, they built a bonfire cooking teas. After dinner they danced around the bonfire, to escape from the tired from the whole day trip.Now Guozhuang bonfire dance is performed for festivals, ceremony or marriage. Both men and women get into a circle,... More
Guozhuang Dance of Tibetans Guozhuang Dance of Tibetans
In the Tibetan language, "Guozhuang dance" means "singing and dancing in a circle". It is one of the three major Tibetan folk dances popular in Tibet and places like Yunnan, Qinghai and Gansu where Tibetans live.  In the dance, men and women of an equal number form a circle with one person acting as the leading dancer. The dance involves repeated musical dialogues in antiphonal style between male and female dancers, with... More
Haha Tone Haha Tone
Haha Tone, which is also known as "Hehe Tone", "Liuzi Tune" and "Lala Tune", is a local genre of opera derived from the countryside in Hebei Province. It has a history of 300 years. Being prevailing in Baoding, Cangzhou, Hengshui and Shijiazhuang in Hebei Province as well as Huimin and Dezhou Region in Shandong Province, Haha Tone is featured by primitive performance, featured singing, and emphasized narration and r... More
Haicai Qiang of the Yi Nationality Haicai Qiang of the Yi Nationality
The folk song, as a kind of important form of expressing emotion, self-education and entertainment, has impregnated into every aspect of Yi people's life. The original meaning of Haicai Qiang (Haicai Tune) is the singing on the "sea", and it is named after this for an aquatic herb in the local "Yilong Lake" which is called "haicai". As a special folk song of the Yi people in Yunnan Province with high reputation at h... More
Haimen Folk Song in Jiangsu Province Haimen Folk Song in Jiangsu Province
Haimen folk song, as the name suggests, refers to the folk song popular in Haimen area in Jiangsu Province. The pristine and natural language is abundant in vivid images, wit and humor. The music is pure, sweet and melodious. Taking nature as the stage, the singer interacts with the river, sea and weald through his songs. Since the folk song has been passed down for hundreds of years, Haimen has been praised as "Land of Folk Songs". Ha... More
Han Tune Erhuang Opera Han Tune Erhuang Opera
The Han Tune Erhuang Opera, also called Shaan Erhuang and Shan Erhuang, is the second important genre of opera in Shaanxi, and enjoys popularity in Ankang, Hanzhong, Shangluo and Xi'an of Shaanxi Province and some areas in Gansu and Hubei Provinces. Originating from mountain airs, eclogues and folksongs, it developed its own style with influence of the Shaanxi opera (qinqiang in Chinese) during the early Qing Dynasty, and by absorbing the tunes ... More
Han Tune Guangguang Opera Han Tune Guangguang Opera
The Han Tune Guangguang Opera, also called Guangguangzi opera, is popular in Hanzhong and Ankang in southern Shaanxi Province. It is thus named because the singing and narration of the opera are based on the Hanzhong dialect (dialect in the Hanshui River Valley), and the sound of "guangguang" produced by bangzi (slit drum). As principal meter names, rhythmic structure and major accompanying instruments of the Guangguang opera share muc... More
Hani Ethnic Polyphonic Folk Song Hani Ethnic Polyphonic Folk Song
Hani ethnic polyphonic folk song is widespread in several Hani villages centering on Puchun Village in the east part of Azhahe Town in Honghe County, and its popular area is in a naturally enclosed environment with inconvenient transportation and was always an area under administration of the Wazha Magistrate. The single ethnic group and the long history of Tusi regime make extraneous heterogeneous cultures fail to permeate the area of Puchun, s... More
Hejian Poetry Hejian Poetry
Hejian poetry has been an outstanding representative of oral literature since the Han Dynasty. It is also an important component of the contemporary culture of the Book of Songs. Hejian poetry is popular in Hejian, a hinterland city in the central south of Hebei Province located in Central Hebei Plain. Hejian, literally meaning "between rivers", is so named because it is sandwiched between the Hutuo and Zhongbao Rivers, with some attri... More
Hero-praising Dance Hero-praising Dance
Hero-praising dance also can be called "Eagle Song", or "Parrot" or "Yangge". It's a kind of folk square dancing integrating dance, essential of southern style boxing, Chinese opera and acting. Its performance manner is vigorous and heroic, with strong atmosphere. It is popular around Guangdong, Fujian and other regions. Performed by the male, the dance carries the meaning of hero praising. Hero-praising dance purpo... More
Hoomei of the Mongolian:Sounding Like Horse-head Fiddle Hoomei of the Mongolian:Sounding Like Horse-head Fiddle
Hoomei(Humai) is a kind of miraculous singing art created by the Mongolian people. It is featured by one singer's singing of two voice parts simultaneously with his own vocal organs. Basic structure of voice-part relation in Humai is the combination of a lasting undertone with rhythms flowing on it. Humai can be divided into Overtone Humai, Tremolo Humai, Complex Humai, etc. It is a unique form of art among folk songs of other ethnic groups in C... More
Horse-head Fiddle of the Mongolians Horse-head Fiddle of the Mongolians
Horse-head fiddle is a bow shaped musical instrument usually used by the Mongolian people, one of the ethnic minorities of China. The musical instrument is named like this because its head is usually carved like the shape of a horse head. It is also called "Chaoer", "Molinhuer", "huqin (Huqin is a general term for certain two-stringed bowed instruments, such as erhu, jinghu, etc.)", "horse tail huqin"... More
Huaer Huaer
Also known as "Yequ" (wild tune) or "Shaonian" (youth), Hua'er is a kind of folk song in local Chinese dialects only sung outside the villages. It is widely popular in the eight minorities including Hui, Han, Tu, Dongxiang, Bao'an, Sala, Tibetan and Yugu of four provinces - Gansu, Qinghai, Ningxia and Xinjiang. Hua'er is usually sung on two major occasions – "hua'er gatherings" and daily life and production. A... More
Huayin Old Tune Huayin Old Tune
Old Tune is a rhythmic vocal opera genre derived from local shadow puppet plays in Huayin City of Shaanxi Province. It is commonly known as "Old Tune Shadow".Unlike traditional Chinese art that is gentle and simple, Old Tune is characterized by its bold and strong style. The music is solemn and stirring and the tune is free and unconstrained. In addition, loud cheers can often be heard in the performance. That's why Old Tune is also ca... More
Illustrations of Various Chinese Folk Art Works Illustrations of Various Chinese Folk Art Works
Rooted in the original Chinese philosophy and social customs, nourished by cultures from diverse nationalities, geographical localities and through different historical times, Chinese folk art has now blossomed and laden with fresh fruit, more vibrant than ever before.Chinese folk art features multiple categories; therefore, it would be hard to cover all. Following are exemplary few. Among the many art works by Chinese female laborers, we will f... More
Jangar Jangar
Jangar is a narrative poem presented in the form of singing and story telling popular among the Mongolian ethnic group in China, especially in areas with Mongolian populations in Xinjiang. It is rated as China's top three heroic epics along with King Gesar and Manas. Jangar was orally created by the people from Mongolian Tuerhute Tribe in the 13th century and handed down to modern times by word of mouth. There wasn't a written text until the ear... More
Jiashan Farming Songs of Zhejiang Province Jiashan Farming Songs of Zhejiang Province
Jiashan farming songs are a major kind of folk songs in Zhejiang Province. Different from the common single folk song, it is a general term for a package of seven different tunes, including Diluosheng (literally the tune of dripping), Luoyangge (literally the song of rice-transplantation), Ditouge (literally the song of Ditou Village), Yangsaoge (literally the song of sheep stink), Heiluodiao (the tune of a chant), Jijige (literally a hurried so... More
Jingdong Drum Song Jingdong Drum Song
Jingdong Drum Song is a form of singing and recital in Jingdong dialect with drum accompaniment. It is comprised of singing by one performer who stands and beats the drum as well as accompaniment of Sanxian (3-string Chinese guitar played with a plectrum), dulcimer and other musical instruments by other performers. Jingdong Drum Song came into existence in the middle period of the Qing Dynasty, with different appellations in different periods an... More
Jingxi Taiping Drum Dance Jingxi Taiping Drum Dance
The Taiping Drum Dance is a folk dance that originated among the common people who used it as a form of self-entertainment.It first appeared in Bejing during theMing Dynasty(1368-1644) and became common during theQing Dynasty(1644-1911).After it spread to Mentougou District during the late Qing Dynasty, the dance was performed in many villages among men and women, young and old. There was even a Taiping Drum on New Year's Eve of the lunar calend... More
Jingxing Lahua Jingxing Lahua
Jingxing Lahua is a type of Yangko in North China. As a special form of folk art prevalent in Jingxing County, it was originated in the Ming and Qing Dynasties and has a fairly long history. Jingxing Lahua is derived from flower fair held on street and square during folk festival, temple fair, celebration and worship.Jingxing County in Shijiazhuang City, Hebei Province is located at the foot of the eastern foothills of Taihang Mountains and in t... More
Jinhu Yangko of Jiangsu Province Jinhu Yangko of Jiangsu Province
Located in the Basin of Lixiahe River in North Jiangsu Province, Jinhu County is surrounded by a lake on three sides. With a vast water area, the county abounds in rice, fish and shrimps. Jinhu County is thus acknowledged as "Land of Fish and Rice". Jinhu Yangko is a unique form of singing which has been created by laboring people in Jinhu area during their long-term rice transplantation. It is fruit of their plain emotions and collect... More
Jinuo Nationality Big Drum Dance Jinuo Nationality Big Drum Dance
Big Drum Dance is a kind of folk dance which has a long history and profound influence on the common people, and it is spreading in Jinuo villages in Jinuoshan Jinuo Town of Jinghong City of Xishuangbanna Autonomous Prefecture of Yunnan Province. The Jinuo nationality has its own creation myth, which is treated as its "family root" by the whole nation. The Jinuo people worship and commemorate this "family root" by means of si... More
Jizhong Folk Pipe-wind Music Jizhong Folk Pipe-wind Music
Jizhong Folk Pipe-wind Music is prevalent on Central Hebei Plain which is located to the south of Beijing, the west of Tianjin and the north of Cangzhou and Dingzhou, including nearly 30 cities and counties. It is a type of percussion and wind, known as "Concert" among the general public. As wind pipes are mainly used to lead the performance and shengs are used to play accompaniment, it is also called "Pipe-wind Music". Apart... More
Jolly stool dance of the Miao ethnic group Jolly stool dance of the Miao ethnic group
People of the Chinese Miao Ethnic Group, dwelling in southeast Guizhou Province, enjoy many ancient and distinctive traditions. A couple of favorite customs are playing lusheng (reed-pipe wind) and the stool dance, both of which continue to be highlights of Miao festivals and major events. During New Year celebrations, lusheng music can be heard and the stool dance seen everywhere in Miao villages. In fact, at every get-together the Miao people ... More
Kedao of the Miao Minority Kedao of the Miao Minority
Kedao (record by carving) of the Miao minority, also called the marital song there, is a kind of Miao toast song in Shibing County. The general content of the song is carved on the cylinder bamboo or wood club and the Miao people would hold it and sing, hence its name. Kedao is popular mainly in Shibing County, Guizhou, which is also the most ancient sign in existence for recording events among the Miao minority in China.Simple and colloquial in... More
Kids flying in the air: Wuchuan Piaose Kids flying in the air: Wuchuan Piaose
Wuchuan Piaose (literally, flying color) originated in Shagang Village of Huangpo Town. It was created by Chen Quheng, a local artist born in the sixth year during the reign of Emperor Xianfeng in the Qing Dynasty. Originally, three of the models were single figures, including Kwan-yin Seated in a Lotus, Shi Qian Stealing Chicken, and the Fairy of Whelk. There was another model called Sanchakou which incorporated two figures contesting in martia... More
Leting Drum Song: a drum, a clapper, a string and a performer Leting Drum Song: a drum, a clapper, a string and a performer
Leting Drum song is a form of Quyi arts that is prevalent in North China's Hebei, Beijing and Tianjin. It was originated from the folk tune Qingpingge popular in Leting County of Hebei Province in the early Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). After improvements by artists of several generations, Qingpingge was gradually divorced from the singing way of folk songs and developed into Shuochang art (storytelling that combines singing and reciting). Around th... More
Lhokha Chang Guozhuo Dance Lhokha Chang Guozhuo Dance
Lhokha Chang Guozhuo dance is a form of drum dance originated in Dabu (present Gyaca) area. "Guozhuang" in Chinese, the "guozhuo" means "circle dance" in Tibetan. As a relatively special art form in traditional Tibetan dance culture, guozhuo dance is one of the oldest dances of various nationalities in the world.Story has it that in the mid 8th century, the 37th Tibetan King Chisong Dezain was building the first tem... More
Li Ethnic Minoritys Firewood Gathering Dance Li Ethnic Minoritys Firewood Gathering Dance
Firewood gathering dance is the representative folk dance of Li Minority, called "Zhuancha" and "Taicha" in Li's language. It originated from Li's funeral custom in ancient Yazhou Prefecture (today's Sanya City of Hainan Province). It is a dance for ancient Li people to protect corpse after someone died, to drive beasts away, to help someone get over a shock or to worship their ancestors. Presently, there is a funeral custom ... More
Liaoning Drum Music Liaoning Drum Music
The Drum Music is popular in the whole Liaoning Province and is flourishing in Haicheng of South Liaoning as well as Niuzhuang, Nantai, Anshan, Shenyang and other places. Having been extremely prevalent since ancient times, it has imposed profound influence on drum music in many places in Northeast China. Among the frescos unearthed from ancient tombs of the Han and Wei Dynasties in Liaoyang City, there is an ancient drawing of drum performance,... More
Lingqiu Lolo Tone Lingqiu Lolo Tone
Lolo Tone is a genre of opera prevailing in Lingqiu County and the neighboring area in Shanxi Province. Evolved from Yiyang Tone, Lolo Tone has its prime time in Qianlong Period of the Qing Dynasty and fell into decay in the late Qing Dynasty and the Republic of China era. It is featured by one performer's singing on stage and the others' chiming with the sound of "Lolo Yoyo" behind the stage, hence the name.Lolo Tone has a long histor... More
Lion Dance Lion Dance
Lion Dance, which originated from China, are traditional Chinese folk activities and folk dance forms. Lion Dance, also known as Playing Lion, is a traditional sport activity and a folk art that imitates the movements of lions. In China, people believe that the lion is an auspicious animal and that Lion Dance would bring them good luck. Therefore, Lion Dance will be performed accompanied with sounds of firecrackers and Gongs and drums at th... More
Listen to the love songs from Tibetan Listen to the love songs from Tibetan
Tibetan love song is a kind of poem that mainly describes the affection between young men and young girls in Tibet and has obtained an important status in Tibetan poems. Because of the special history of development and religious tenets of the Tibetan Buddhism, love songs became an important component of the history of the Tibetan Buddhism and the Tibetan society. Among various love songs handed down in Tibet, the most famous ones were those of ... More
Living Fossil in the Dance History - Nuo Dance of Wanzai County Living Fossil in the Dance History - Nuo Dance of Wanzai County
As an ancient custom, Nuo basically means greeting the god to exorcize the ghost of pestilence. Nuo dance refers to the dance performed at grand Nuo ceremonies. With a long history, it can be dated back to the record of "folk Nuo" in The Analects of Confucius. Nuo dance has been recognized as the living fossil in the dance history. Nuo dance of Wanzai County originated in the Yuan Dynasty and prospered in the early Ming Dynasty. It is ... More
Living fossil of ancient music-Chaohua Chuige Living fossil of ancient music-Chaohua Chuige
Chuige is a very ancient Chinese performance form with wind instruments among which pipe is the principal one supplemented by sheng, flute, xiao (a vertical bamboo flute), drum, big cymbals, and finger cymbals, etc. It can be rated as symphony of ancient China. Originating possibly from the Shang dynasty, Chuige has a history that can be traced back to nearly 4000 year ago. According to the Annals of Mi County, Chaohua Chuige inherited features ... More
Long Melody Ballad of the Mongolians Long Melody Ballad of the Mongolians
Long melody is a sort of ballad which was created by nomadic tribes in North China in the course of stockbreeding activities and is sung at the time of grazing and during traditional festivals. It is featured by long-drawn-out and leisurely rhythm, extensive artistic conception, magnitude of tones, fewness of lyric, long tinge, and highly decorative rhythm. Long melody with the most distinct feature is coloratura singing style evolving from the ... More
Luan Drum Song Luan Drum Song
Lu'an Drum Song is a traditional form of singing and recital with drum accompaniment in North China. It is endowed with distinct regional features. Known as "Lu'an Hackneyed Tune", "Ganban Tone" and "Lu'an Gushu (recital with drum accompaniment)", it is named after the ancient Lu'an Prefecture (the present Changzhi in Shanxi Province) where it was prevailing.Early in the 3rd year of the Qianlong Period of the Qing D... More
Lurigele Dance of Daur Ethnic Minority Lurigele Dance of Daur Ethnic Minority
"Lurigele" is a kind of representative folk dance in Daur. It differs in different places, and has several different names such as "Ahanbo", "Langtudabei", "Hakumai" , "Hagenmaigele" and so on.In the inhabited district of Daur Minority in Inner Mongolia and the Nenjiang River valley of Heilongjiang, "Lurigele" dance is a general term for all folk dances there, most of which are self-ent... More
Lusheng Dance Lusheng Dance
The Lusheng Dance is a traditional folk dance popular among ethnic minorities like the Dong, Miao, Yi, Wa, Nu, Dai etc. It is also known as "Lusheng Steps in the Hall" or "Lusheng Tramping". The dance originated from ancient ritual dances praying for good harvest before sowing or giving thanks to gods after a good harvest, and those performed on ceremonies paying tribute to ancestors.  The lively dance is performed in a ... More
Lute Ballads of the Dong Ethnics Lute Ballads of the Dong Ethnics
Pipa Ge or lute ballad, a kind of folk songs of Dong minority in China that has been passed down from generation to generation, was listed in the directory of China's intangible cultural heritages in 2006.Pipa Ge is prevailing in the region where the southern dialect of Dong is widely spoken. It falls into two major categories: the lyrical and the narrative, the content of which covers a wide range of fields, including Dong's history, mythology,... More
Maogusi Dance of the Tujia Ethnic Group Maogusi Dance of the Tujia Ethnic Group
"Maogusi" is an old form of dance popular among the Tujia people living the west of Hunan province of China. It is performed to remember their ancestors' achievements in cultivation, halieutics and hunting. "Maogusi" means "Hunters covered with hair" in Tujia language. According to the legend, a Tujia young man went down the mountain to learn the farming skills and came back to teach the skills to the local peo... More
Meizhou Hakka Folk Songs Meizhou Hakka Folk Songs
Hakka folk song is sung in its own dialect and it is the oral literature of the Hakkas, rich with Hakka dialect features and idyllic characteristics. It has become an independent branch of folk song. Folk song is one kind of ballad. It is recorded in historical materials that the term "folk song" came into being in the Tang Dynasty and the "Folk Song Queen" Liu Sanjie's tale transmitted among people in Meizhou just took place... More
Melody from exotic land - folk musical instruments of Hui people Melody from exotic land - folk musical instruments of Hui people
Ningxia is located on the upper and middle reaches of the Yellow River in western China. It is known for its lush fields and also for being beyond the Great Wall. The local culture of Ningxia developed through the assimilation of the cultures of the central plain and western regions. There have been many unique musical instruments developed in Ningxia. In the last century it was found that the wawu, mimi and kouxian, all Ningxia instruments, had... More
Merry steps - moonlight dance of Axi Merry steps - moonlight dance of Axi
The Yi ethnic group has many branches. Some still live in extremely cold areas and their dances vary. The Moonlight Dance of Axi, popular in Lunan and Mile of Yunnan Province, is a kind of mass dance of Axi and Sani people of the Yi ethnic minority. Every year, when it's time for spring ploughing, Axi people plant in the moonlight at night. This is the origin of the Moonlight Dance. The accompanying instruments include the big Sanxian (three-str... More
Mudong Folk Songs Mudong Folk Songs
Mudong is located in the east of Chongqing and on the south bank of the Yangtze River. It is a town in Ba'nan area of Chongqing Municipality. Every year in the sowing and harvest seasons, people can constantly hear one and another loud, sonorous, clear, melodious, and sweet folk song if they stand on the vast farmland of Mudong Town in Ba'nan (ba is an alias of Chongqing, banan means the south of Chongqing). Mudong folk songs are the songs sung ... More
Mupamipa Mupamipa
Mupamipa is the widest spread mythological story about the creation of the world in the style of an epic among the Lahu nationality in China. It is part of the Lahu oral literature popular in Lahu Autonomous County of Yunnan Province. The word "mupamipa" means "the creation of the world" in the Lahu language.The epic, composed of 17 chapters in 2,300 lines, is about the life in the initial stages of the creation of the sky, t... More
Music in Ancient China: A Structure of Harmony Music in Ancient China: A Structure of Harmony
"If a man lacks the human virtues, what has he to do with ritual? If a man lacks the human virtues, what has he to do with music?" To Confucius, music and human virtue worked much like gears turning in a finely tuned mechanism. Like the cogs of a machine grabbing each other and propelling each gear forward, human virtue cannot move forward without music. Similarly, one can't move forward as a musician or student of music without the vi... More
Music of the Ancient Zhihua Temple Music of the Ancient Zhihua Temple
The Zhihua Temple was first built in the ninth year of Zhengtong Period of the Ming Dynasty (1444 AD), under the supervision of Wang Zhen, a powerful eunuch of Emperor Yingzong. Later, Wang Zhen made a decision without consulting the emperor to introduce part of court music into the temple and he also formed an orchestra for Buddhist rituals and some folk activities. That was the origin of the ancient Zhihua Temple music.During the reigns of Emp... More
Mystic songs of the Shui ethnic group Mystic songs of the Shui ethnic group
The Shui, deriving from the ancient Baiyue ethnic group, is scattered in Sandu Shui Autonomous County of Guizhou Province and Huangni River, Gugan of Fuyuan County, Dahe and Long'an etc of Yiliang of Yunnan Province. Now, they speak and write in Chinese. The former "Shui Script" is only used for augury by wizards. The Shui's ballads, in terms of form, can be divided into single-song, dual-song, root song, melody song and question song ... More
Nanjing Baiju Nanjing Baiju
As a popular dialectal performance of talking and singing, Baiju remains the only ancient local opera in Nanjing. Hitherto it has a history of over 600 years. Similar to monolog comic talks or cross talks, Baiju usually entails one or two performers, and sometimes as many as three to five people. All performers speak Nanjing dialect, and sing popular ditties. Baiju is plain, simple, easy to understand and also humorous. It is recognized as an ar... More
Nanyin Music Nanyin Music
Also known as "string and pipe music" or "Quanzhou nanyin music", nanyin music is one of the oldest existing music genres of China. In the Western and Eastern Han Dynasties, and the Jin, Tang and the Northern and Southern Dynasties, immigrants from the central plains brought their music culture with them to Quanzhou-oriented Minnan area. Their music fused with local folk music, becoming a new genre with the charm of ancient m... More
Northeast Drum Song Northeast Drum Song
Northeast Drum Song is a form of singing and recital with drum accompaniment which is popular in three provinces in Northeast China: Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang Province. Prevailing in Shenyang City where Fengtian Prefecture was established in the late Qing Dynasty, Northeast Drum Song was also known as "Fengtian Drum Song". It was called "Liaoning Drum Song" after Fengtian was renamed Liaoning. Originated in the middle ... More
Nuo Art in Guizhou Nuo Art in Guizhou
Nuo is a phenomenon of witchcraft culture which has its root in Chinese primitive religion and means to drive away devils. Primitive people thought that all diseases were caused by devils. The ritual activities of Nuo were already in existence as early as early as Shang Dynasty and were recorded in history from Qin Dynasty to Qing Dynasty.The over 3000 years' historical deposit made the variety of Nuo rites: its religion belief gradually became ... More
Nuo Culture in the Three Gorges of the Yellow River Nuo Culture in the Three Gorges of the Yellow River
The Three Gorges of the Yellow River lie in Yongjing County in the southwest of central Gansu Province. They border on Qinghai Province to the west, and on the city of Lanzhou to the northeast. The Three Gorges of the Yellow River has gotten the name because the Yellow River flows through a 107-kilometer stretch which includes Bingling Gorge, Liujia Gorge and Yanguo Gorge. In the gorges, there are three branches flowing into the Yellow River, in... More
Nvshu (Womens Writing): The Only Existent Gender Script Nvshu (Womens Writing): The Only Existent Gender Script
Jiangyong County is located in southern Hunan Province. It is adjacent to Guilin of Guangxi Province in the west and south, and it is subordinate to Yongzhou City. Jiangyong Nvshu is popular in Shangjiangwei area (including Shangjiangwei Town, Tongshanling Farm and some villages nearby), and used to be popular in Xiaopu Town, Qianjiadong Yaozu County, Yunshan Town and Huangjialing County, etc. Nvshu is passed on from the older generation of the ... More
Passionate Hair Swinging Dance of the Gaoshan ethnic group Passionate Hair Swinging Dance of the Gaoshan ethnic group
Gaoshan people are good at singing and dancing ever from the ancient times. Almost all the dinners, get-togethers or big activities cannot do without the lyrical songs and dance. Gaoshan dance has distinct primitive color, simulating, reflecting and reproducing those movement and scenes of fishing, hunting, and farming. Though its content is rich and colorful, its forms are mostly collective dance. The number of participants varies from dozens o... More
Perfect coordination of hands and mouth - Clapper ballad and Allegretto Perfect coordination of hands and mouth - Clapper ballad and Allegretto
Clapper Ballad and Allegretto are both story-telling and singing with theatrical rhyming. However, they have slight differences. Although they are both performed with the same form of reciting and singing with a strong rhythm, and the words of their songs are complete and regular verse, they differ in styles, dialects, rhymes and tunes. Allegretto or kuaibanshu which developed on the basis of Allegretto is a form that relates stories with comple... More
Pili puppet show: from mini-stage to small screen Pili puppet show: from mini-stage to small screen
Have you ever heard of Pili puppet show? Strange name, isn't it? It's named "Pili" because every episode has "pili" in its title. This folk-art form is performed by many kinds of puppets - some of them are cool, some intelligent, and some funny. Unlike traditional puppet shows, Pili puppet show uses state-of-the-art animation to help present its fighting art. The delicate design of the appearance and characteristics of each p... More
Puppet Shows Puppet Shows
Called "marionette show" in ancient China, a puppet show is a theatre performance in which puppet figures are made to move by puppeteers pulling strings or by putting their hands inside them.In China, the origin of puppets dates back to the Shang Dynasty, when the custom of burying slaves alive with their deceased masters was practiced. Of the 3,000 funeral objects excavated from the Yin Ruins in Anyang City, there are pottery figurine... More
Qiangmu Qiangmu
Qiangmu, also called "sorcerer's dance", is a kind of religious dance. "Semo qinmu qiangmu" is Gelug Qiangmu of Tibetan Buddhism performed by monks of Tashihunpo Monastery in Shigatse of Tibet. It is held in each eighth month of Tibetan year. In Tibetan language, "Semo" means "to watch", and "Qinmu" refers to "grand". Therefore, "Semo qinmu qiangmu" has the meaning of "wa... More
Qianshan Temple Music Qianshan Temple Music
20km away from the southeast of Anshan City, Liaoning Province, Qianshan Mountain is one of the famous scenic spots in China. It is located in Northeast China, enjoying the fame of "Bright Pearls in Northeast China" together with Changbai Mountain in Jilin Province. Qianshan Mountain is the sacred land of Buddhism and Taoism. Qianshan Temple Music is divided into two types: Buddhist Music and Taoist Music. It is evolved from various Bu... More
Qingyin (Pure Tone) - arias from Sichuan Qingyin (Pure Tone) - arias from Sichuan
In the early days, this form of aria was called changxiaoqu (small tunes). It also had other names according to whether the performer uses a yueqin, a four-stringed plucked instrument with a full-moon-shaped sound box, or a pipa as accompaniment. Since the 1950s, Sichuan qingyin has been formally used as the proper term to designate arias sung in the Sichuan dialect. These are popular in cities and rural areas around Chengdu, the capital of the ... More
Quanfeng Flower Lantern Dance Quanfeng Flower Lantern Dance
Quanfeng flower lantern dance is an artistic performance in Quanfeng Town, Xiushui County of Jiangxi Province. Integrating drama, dance and lantern art, it has a strong appeal of folk custom, with lantern team performance as its predominant feature. During the Spring Festival, different flower lantern teams converge together, singing from the first day of the New Year till the Lantern Festival. They visit almost every family and even perform all... More
Roles in Peking Opera Roles in Peking Opera
 In Peking Opera, there are four roles: the male and female roles, the painted-face role, and the comedic role. These roles have the natural features of age and sex, as well as social status, and are artificially exaggerated by makeup, costume and gestures. ShengShengLao Sheng and Xiao ShengSheng, a male role, usually a leading one, dates back to Southern Dramaof the Song and Yuan Dynasties (960-1368). This role appears in operas in al... More
Sacred Buddhist Painting - The Tibetan Thangka Sacred Buddhist Painting - The Tibetan Thangka
A Thangka is a painted or embroidered banner which was hung in a monastery or a family altar and carried by lamas in ceremonial processions. In Tibetan the word 'than' means flat and the suffix 'ka' stands for painting. The Thangka is thus a kind of painting done on flat surface but which can be rolled up when not required for display. The most common shape of a Thangka is the upright rectangular form. One does also find horizontal oblong banner... More
Sayeerhe of Tujia Minority Sayeerhe of Tujia Minority
"Saye'erhe" of Changyang Tujia minority in Hubei is a kind of funeral dance popular among people of Tujia minority at the middle reach of Qingjiang Valley in Hubei. "Saye'erhe" means dance for the deceased or "dance following funeral drum tempo". When the elder dies, his coffin will be placed in the front of the mourning hall, and relatives and neighbors will come to express condolence. In the night, a mass of peopl... More
Shadow Puppet Play Shadow Puppet Play
The shadow puppet play, also called "shadow play", is a drama form in which the player holds the human figures that are engraved by the animal hides with colored paintings, and reflected on the curtain through the light, singing and dancing controlled by the player with the silk string, gongs and drums music, playing a series of stories. It is widely spread in most regions in China, except Tibet and Xinjiang, with different styles of s... More
Shaman Dance Shaman Dance
The Shaman Dance is a kind of dance performed by Shamanistic sorcerers during sacrificial rituals and activities for driving out evil and disease etc. Shamanism is a primitive religion practiced among ethnic minorities of the Altaic language family, such as the Mongolian, Manchurian, Oroqen, Ewenki and Daur ethnic groups.In Shamanism, all things have souls, and ancestors and nature are worshipped. The main religious activity is the sorcerer's da... More
Shandong Clapper Ballad Shandong Clapper Ballad
Shandong clapper ballad is a very typical folk art form of story-telling of rhyme-singing performance. It is also called "Wu Laoer", as in its early period it mainly performed the stories of Wu Song who was the second child of the Wu family (in Chinese "laoer" means the second child), and consequently the actors were called "those who tell the stories of Wu Laoer" or "those who sing the stories of Wu Laoer"... More
Shangdang Bayinhui Shangdang Bayinhui
As a folk ensemble of Chinese wind and percussion instruments, Shangdang Bayinhui is widely spread in six counties (cities and regions) in Jincheng City, southeast of Shanxi Province. It was originated in the Xia and Shang Dynasties, formed in the Spring and Autumn Period, and developed as an integral form of music in the Han and Tang Dynasties, enjoying a history of over 2000 years. The ancient Chinese found that many materials could make a sou... More
Shanghai gong-drum song Shanghai gong-drum song
Gong-drum song (taibao shu) used to be called "Taibao song". "Taibao" derived from "Taibu" (imperial divination), a ceremony for the blessing of peace in suburban counties and rural areas of Shanghai. Because the performer sang stories while beating gong and drum on his own, the gong-drum song was also popularly known as "gong song" and "divine drum song". "Taibu" was similar to Taoist ... More
Shaoxing Lianhualao Opera Shaoxing Lianhualao Opera
Lianhualao opera, also known as Lianhuale or lianhuanao, is a local folk art performance in Shaoxing. The name is derived from the short interlude lines such as "Li Li Lianhualao" in the performance. But another saying has it that Lianhualao changed its name from "Sanhuale" in the Tang Dynasty to "Lianhuale" and then "Lianhualao" in the later generations. Owing to its vivid and lively singing, the popular ... More
Shaoxing Pinghu Tune Shaoxing Pinghu Tune
Shaoxing Pinghu tune, alias "Yuejun Nanci", is called "Shaoxing Pingdiao" for short. This folk art prevails in Shaoxing and the surrounding area, and it gets this name because its major tune is "Pinghu tune". It is said that Shaoxing Pinghu tune was initially created in the early Ming Dynasty and taken shape in the early Qing Dynasty. It is performed by one actor, who sings and tells the story while playing the sanx... More
Shengzhou Chuida (Wind and Percussion Music) Shengzhou Chuida (Wind and Percussion Music)
Shengzhou Chuida (wind and percussion) originated from the temple fair culture and has a close connection with the Buddhist music. It is a kind of folk music performed by instruments such as the gong, drum, urheen, jinghu, sanxian, cymbal, suona, trombone, and so on.Shengzhou Chuida is a chief component of Zhedong Luogu (eastern Zhejiang gong and drum music). Zhejiang Luogu (also called "Guchui" in the folk) refers to the ethnic and fo... More
Shield Dance in Yongxin of Jiangxi Shield Dance in Yongxin of Jiangxi
Shield dance, also known as men's rattan shield dance or rolling and blocking shield, has been spread in towns like Longyuankou and Yan'ge in south Yongxin County of Jiangxi Province. The saying that "If you do not practice shield dance, you will not be qualified to be a real man" has been handed down until now in Nantang Village of Longkou Town. Shield dance integrates martial arts, acrobatics, dance and music, and its movements are r... More
Shui Script Shui Script
The Shui ethnic minority is descended from the Baiyue ethnic group in ancient times. The Shui script refers to distinctive embryonic characters created by ancestors of the Shui people. In the Shui language, it is called "泐睢" (lè suī) of which "泐" (lè) means characters and "睢" means the Shui people, so "泐睢" means characters or books of the Shui people.The Shui script is the generic term for an... More
Shulaibao Shulaibao
Also known as  "Doggerel", "Jingle" and "Clever Tongue", Shulaibao (a folk art featuring rhythmic storytelling to clapper accompaniment) is popular across China. Originally, it was performed by street entertainers in front of shops for money. In their performances, the entertainers would praise the goods in the shops as treasures for their diversity and exquisiteness, hence the name "Shulaibao", which... More
Shuobu of the Manchu Minority Shuobu of the Manchu Minority
Changbai Mountain in the southeast of Jilin Province is the cradle of the Manchu. It was on this boundless, beautiful and mysterious fertile land that the Manchu forefathers lived and multiplied since time immemorial. The Manchu Shuobu is a form of ancient art of singing and recital with considerable length, which has been passed down orally by the Manchu people and their ancestors. It is called "Ulabun" in Manchu language, meaning &qu... More
Small Puppet vs. Large Stage Small Puppet vs. Large Stage
The life of a small puppet is given by its performer. Being pulled up and down, the small puppet gets its expression and movements. Thereafter the story begins. At the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the small Quanzhou string puppets have drawn the attention of the whole world. Flying after the fingers of the performers, they have caught the breath of the audience by giving an incredible performance beyond time and space. There ar... More
Social Context of Folk Arts - Birth Social Context of Folk Arts - Birth
What is the theme of human birth? First it is to know where life comes from; and then to wish that the newborn grows up healthy and strong. Human life comes from mother's body of the universe, which the Chinese believe is as primeval as pigeon eggs, and from mother's body of totem animals.The "red egg" from the maternal family sent on the first full month of a new born, with paper-cut "evergreen tree" pasted on it, a folk cus... More
Social Context of Folk Arts - Funerals and Memorial Services Social Context of Folk Arts - Funerals and Memorial Services
The keynote for funeral and memorial service is spiritual eternity and continuation of life after death. This is also the main theme of Chinese folk art works on the subject. Death at old age is a normal course of life referred to as "passing away" or "return to heaven", which means back to mother's body of the universe. Wedding and funeral are "red and white happy events" in Chinese culture.By social customs, steam... More
Social Context of Folk Arts - Wedding Ceremonies Social Context of Folk Arts - Wedding Ceremonies
Traditional wedding is meant for the union of a male and a female, yin and yang, which lead to human propagation and perpetual life. The folk art works on custom wedding ceremony bear distinctive features on the theme.A large-scale "Happy baby" ball flower papercut or a red big-lettered "Double happiness" pasted in the center of the cave window at wedding ceremonies (Ansai, Shaanxi).Fish, being a proliferous legendary animal,... More
Some Dances of the Zhuang People Some Dances of the Zhuang People
The Zhuang have a number of dances. Originating from different periods of their history, it is thought that the older ones have a ritual origin, imitating the movements of their shamans during their religious ceremonies. In general their dances can be divided into four main types: 1. Religious dances2. Labor dances3. Animal dances4. Love dances1. Religious dances1) Dance of the Bronze Drum Possibly the most popular dance among the Zhuang, in mos... More
Song-and-dance Duet Song-and-dance Duet
Song-and-dance Duet, or "Song-and-dance Squad", is a genre of opera prevailing in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region and northern regions of Shanxi, Shaanxi and Hebei Province. The repertoires are usually sung by one clown and one positive female role, hence comes the name. Different artistic styles of Song-and-dance Duet have been gradually formed in different regions during the long-term development. It was divided into East School and... More
Stilt Stilt
Stilt, or "Crutch", is a form of folk performing art in China. It is performed by a dancer walking on wooden stilts and is a folk art which perfectly combines laboring with dance and music. It is also known as "Upward Viewing Drama" because the audience need to raise their head to view the performance. The origin of stilt has bearing on totem worship of the primitive clans and the life of fishermen living along coasts. Danzhu... More
Storytelling Art of Northern Shaanxi Storytelling Art of Northern Shaanxi
The storytelling art of northern Shaanxi is a very important folk art form in northwestern areas of China. It is mainly popular in northern Shaanxi, such as Yan'an, Yulin etc. It originated from the performances of some poor blind men singing legends and stories in folk tunes of northern Shaanxi Province. Later, with the introduction of tunes of Meihu, qinqiang opera, Daoqing and Xintianyou, it gradually achieved the storytelling form of singing... More
Stringed and Woodwind Music Stringed and Woodwind Music
Stringed and woodwind music of Jiangnan is the umbrella name of the stringed and woodwind music popular in the southern part of Jiangsu, the western part of Zhejiang and Shanghai. The name is originated from the fact that the band mainly uses stringed and woodwind musical instruments such as urheen (erhu), dulcime (yangqin), lute, sanxian, qinqin, bamboo flute, Xiao and so on. The stringed and woodwind music had been popular among the people no ... More
Suzhou Pingtan - a performing art in Wu dialect Suzhou Pingtan - a performing art in Wu dialect
Suzhou pingtan is a general term denoting Suzhou pinghua and tanci. It also enjoys great popularity in Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces as well as in Shanghai. This art has a long history. Pinghua developed from the storytelling art of the Tang Dynasty and Song Dynasty, and performers only spoke instead of sang during the performance. Pingtan evolved from bianwen that propagandized Buddhist teachings in the Tang Dynasty. In the late years of the M... More
Taoist Music of Suzhou Xuanmiao Taoist Temple Taoist Music of Suzhou Xuanmiao Taoist Temple
As the leading Taoist temples in Suzhou, Xuanmiao Taoist Temple is also the center for studying and performing Taoist music in Suzhou. Taoists inside the temple are known for belonging to the "Liberal Class" which is reputedly good at Taoist music. The artistic system of Taoist music has been fostered by two factors. On the one hand, it has benefited from imperial art of the Southern Tang Dynasty (with Jinling as its capital) and of th... More
Taoist Music of the Wudang Mountain Taoist Music of the Wudang Mountain
The Wudang Mountain was called Taihe Mountain in ancient times. Located in Shiyan City of Hubei Province, the mountain looks sublime and imposing, commanding the Danjiangkou reservoir and backing on Shennongjia forested area, with a continuous length over 400 km. It boasts 72 peaks. The elevation of its highest peak, Tianzhu Mountain, is 1612m. The other peaks are all inclined to Tianzhu Mountain, presenting a marvelous spectacle. From time imme... More
The Ballet of the East - The Flower Drum Lantern The Ballet of the East - The Flower Drum Lantern
The flower drum lantern is a traditional folk dance enjoying a long history. Originating in the Song Dynasty, the art form got extremely popular in the Qianlong Period of the Qing Dynasty. It's much favored by local people and the mass audience alike due to its natural and elegant dance, strong drum and gong beats, lyrical lantern songs and lively short dramas.  The flower drum lantern shows are usually performed in rural areas, especially ... More
The Art of Yimakan of Hezhen Nationality The Art of Yimakan of Hezhen Nationality
“Yimakan” is a unique art mainly consisted of talking and singing which is passed by mouth and ear from generation to generation of Hezhen Nationality. The tune Yimakan adopted is termed Yimakan tune, and the form is the combination of a person’s talking and singing without instrumental accompaniment. It vividly displays their experiences of hunting and fishing, life and fight, marriage, dance show and other ceremonies, and it ... More
The Art of Talking and Singing on the Hulun Buir Grassland The Art of Talking and Singing on the Hulun Buir Grassland
Located in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, the Hulun Buir Grassland is one of the four largest grasslands in the world and regarded as the best grassland on the planet. On this best grassland, the art of talking and singing with rich ethnic features is thriving. When you ride a horse on the vast grassland, you'll be accompanied by the unique art. "Haolibao" is a subgenre of the talking and singing art widely popular among the Mongoli... More
The Art World Created by Chinese Folk Arts The Art World Created by Chinese Folk Arts
Chinese folk art is vastly different from Western traditional art in philosophy concept, art structure and form, and color composition.Philosophy concept — Chinese folk art, and the art of Chinese officialdom and professional artists share the same philosophy base. They are rooted in the same comprehension that heaven and human, objects and subjects are of one entity; and they are based on the same cosmic ontology. However, folk art is 1 c... More
The Core of Chinese Folk Arts The Core of Chinese Folk Arts
Folk social customs are the carriers of Chinese folk art which has numerous categories and a variety of art forms. However, despite all the categories and forms on the outside, the core lies within the basic cultural consciousness of the people and the original Chinese philosophy. ... More
The Cucurbit Flute The Cucurbit Flute
The cucurbit flute is a musical instrument unique to the ethnic groups in China's Yunnan Province. It is especially popular among the Dai people. The instrument is made with natural materials of gourd and bamboo. Composed of a gourd, main pipes, reeds and auxiliary pipes, the cucurbit flute sounds beautiful and heartwarming. It is ideal for expressing soft and tender feelings. As the sounds are as soft and graceful as shaking silk, the flute is ... More
The Farming Song of Qingpu District in Shanghai The Farming Song of Qingpu District in Shanghai
Of all farming songs, those boasting the most unique aria mainly come from Liantang, Zhaoxiang, Jinze, Shangta and Zhujiajiao Towns of Qingpu District in Shanghai. In the meantime, they are further developed and well-received in Songjiang, Jinshan and Fengxian Districts. Rice is cultivated in all these regions. Farming songs have also been spread to neighboring places in other provinces, specifically, Wujiang of Jiangsu Province and Jiashan of Z... More
The Henan Battle Array of Shielded Soldiers The Henan Battle Array of Shielded Soldiers
The battle array of shielded soldiers is a kind of ancient fighting art practiced only in north China. Dating back several hundred years to the Ming Dynasty, the battle array is kept alive nowhere else than Shilipu Village of Shahe city in China’s Hebei Province, where it's called "rattan shield array".In the Shang Dynasty, when battles were frequent among northern tribes, someone invented the rattan shield for self protection in... More
The History: Over 2,000 Years The History: Over 2,000 Years
Chinese opera originated in ancient song and dance. Around 800 BC, there emerged "优(you)," who were kept by the nobles for their own entertainment. These people, usually males, good at singing, dancing and impersonations, developed into the earliest actors of Chinese opera. According to an age-old and widely spread story about a famous actor, Meng, these people could sometimes exert influence through their performance. Sun Shu'ao, one ... More
The Korean Nongak Dance The Korean Nongak Dance
The Korean ethnic people are good at singing and dancing. It's a common practice for the Korean people, men and women, old and young, to dance trippingly to the accompaniment of drumbeats and the gayageum (a traditional Korean zither-like string instrument). The Korean ethnic people living at the foot of the Changbai Mountain in Northeastern China have long been engaged in rice planting. To make it easier for growing and managing rice in a vast ... More
The Origin of Shanghai Rap The Origin of Shanghai Rap
Based on the tunes of "monodrama", the Shanghai Rap has been evolved by drawing on the performing skills of Suzhou Tanci Storytelling. In the early days, when the monodrama actor was to change a scene, there tended to be a performer to sing a tune, which was accompanied by qin played by another performer. The libretto of the tune was mostly improvised, no script prepared beforehand. This is the early form of Shanghai Rap. It is mainly ... More
The Sichuan Boatmen The Sichuan Boatmen
The Sichuan Boatmen's Chant is a type of work song in folk music style sung to synchronize the working movements of boatmen and boat trackers in the Sichuan reach of the Yangtze River, with one person leading and all others joining in the chorus.Chongqing Municipality and eastern Sichuan are the main birthplaces of the Sichuan Boatmen's Chant, which is kept well alive in these areas. It is mainly popular in Jinshajiang River, the Yangtze River a... More
The Tujia Hand-Swinging Dance The Tujia Hand-Swinging Dance
Originated from the primitive sacrificial dance, the Tujia hand-swinging dance of western Hu'nan is a folk dance most characteristic of the Tujia nationality and best representative of the age-old Tujia traditions. The dance is mainly popular in areas like Longshan, Baojing and Youngshun etc of western Hu'nan. Stemming from the old ancestor-worshipping rituals of the Tujia nationality, the hand-swinging dance has been around for nearly a thousan... More
The Work-chant at the Dock of Shanghai Port The Work-chant at the Dock of Shanghai Port
In the Tang and Song Dynasties, major ports in Shanghai and its surrounding areas were located in Qinglong Town, which, at the mouth of Wusong River, is now in northwest Qingpu County of Shanghai City. Later, due to silt of Wusong River channel, port operations were gradually transferred from Qinglong Town to Shanghai Pu (a small tributary of Wusong River). In November 1983, Shanghai was opened up as a trading port. In 1931, Shanghai Port became... More
Tianjin Tune Tianjin Tune
Tianjin Tune is one of the most representative folk art genres in Tianjin. Sung in local Tianjin dialect, the tune is pellucid and sonorous with strong rustic charm. It is often in the form of a solo or duet show, in which the performers sing ballads to the accompaniment of hand-held bamboo clappers, with the large sanxian and sihu players providing additional accompaniment.     The tune is a combination of various local ditt... More
Tibetan Layi Tibetan Layi
Layi is a love-focused folksong form popular in Amdo Tibetan areas like Qinghai, Gansu and Sichuan. It is distributed around areas surrounding the Qinghai Lake and the Yellow River Valley (Hainan and Huangnan Prefectures). Layi is born out of Tibetan folksongs. The division of three major Tibetan areas in the 7th century contributed to the wide popularity of layi in Amdo Tibetan area. There are a great variety of and a large number of layi songs... More
Tibetan Play Tibetan Play
Tibetan play is an important cultural component of Tibetans' social life. Called "Ace Lhamo" in Tibetan, it is very popular in Tibet, Sichuan, Qinghai and Yunnan Provinces where many Tibetans live. This art form carries strong flavors of Tibetan Buddhism in expression techniques and contents. As an extensive dramatic system, Tibetan play incorporates many types and schools of art due to different natural conditions, customs, culture an... More
Twelve Muqam Twelve Muqam
"Muqam" is a kind of Islamic music that is distributed in 19 nations and regions of Middle Asia, South Asia, West Asia and North Africa. "Muqam Art of Uygur Minority of Xinjiang in China" is the umbrella name of all the Muqam that is popular in the Uygur residence area in Xinjiang. It is represented by "Twelve Muqam", including twelve classical pieces of music such as Lake, Qiebiyate, Muxiawulaike, Qiaerga, Panjiga,... More
Water-nourished folk dance of the Dai people Water-nourished folk dance of the Dai people
The folk dances of the 840,000 Dai Ethnic Group enjoy not only wide popularity but great diversity. Most of them imitate the movements of subtropical creatures. The percussion instruments used for accompaniment include elephant-foot drums, gongs, and bronze drums. Different dances have their one special drumbeat and drum vocabulary. The drumbeat is not only the tempo of a dance but a kind of language for people to communicate their feelings. The... More
Weeding gong-drum song of northern Sichuan Weeding gong-drum song of northern Sichuan
The weeding gong-drum song of northern Sichuan is largely distributed in the four counties and three districts of Guangyuan city. Qingchuan weeding gong-drum song is the most representative one. The folk song is usually performed by a group of people while weeding in the corn and soybean field in July and August every year. The weeding gong-drum song not only ensures the progress and quality of weeding, but also makes the heavy manual work easie... More
Wenzhou Guci (Drumbeat Lyrics) Wenzhou Guci (Drumbeat Lyrics)
Wenzhou Guci (Wenzhou Drumbeat Lyrics) is a distinctive folk singing tune popular in Wenzhou of Zhejiang Province and the adjacent areas. It is also called "Changci" (singing lyrics). As most of the actors engaged in this art in the past were blind men, it is also called "瞽词" (guci) or "盲词" (mangci) [both "瞽" and "盲" mean blind].The uncle of Emperor Minghuang of Tang was said to be the founder of... More
Womens Writing Womens Writing
Jiangyong Nv Shu is the only existing female characters in the world. It is a writing system exclusively used by women in the Jiangxu area of Jiangyong County of just 20,000 people in the south tip of Hunan Province. Nv Shu characters are rhomboid, with slim and regular strokes that look like ants and mosquitoes. As such, the characters are nicknamed "long-leg mosquito writing" or "ant writing". The characters are used only b... More
Wooden Drum Dance of the Wa Minority Wooden Drum Dance of the Wa Minority
The wooden drum dance is an indispensable dance in traditional sacrificial activities of the Wa Minority in China. The dance, led by a sorcerer, is performed throughout the sacrificial rituals held in the twelfth month of the lunar calendar each year.The wooden drum is a "divine instrument" handed down from one generation to another among the Wa people. It is regarded as the source of the procreation of the Wa Minority. According to th... More
Wutu Dance of the Tu Minority Wutu Dance of the Tu Minority
The Wutu dance of Tu minority is popular in Nianduhu Village, Tongren County, Qinghai Province. It is a unique folk custom and culture in that area and is celebrated from 5th to 20th Nov. of lunar calendar each year, including reciting Safety Sutras, joint entertainment between men and gods as well as warding off diseases and evil spirits. "Wutu" is also the name of the dancers. At the beginning of the ritual, the "Wutu" danc... More
Xiangsheng (comic dialogue) - a skill on the mouth Xiangsheng (comic dialogue) - a skill on the mouth
Naturally, Xiangsheng(comic dialogue) performers traditionally have trained skills including telling, imitation, amusing and singing. Since Xiangsheng is an art of language, and the techniques of handling language and voice are quite important. Therefore, the four basic skills seem essential to Xiangsheng performers. Telling refers to the handling of jokes, twisters, two-part allegorical sayings and so on. It requires the performers to have an a... More
Xiangsheng (Crosstalk) Xiangsheng (Crosstalk)
Xiangsheng (Crosstalk) is a traditional Chinese comic performance featuring jokes and funny dialogues. Originated in Beijing, the art is popular across the country. It is widely believed that xiangsheng was formed sometime between the reigns of Emperor Xianfeng and Tongzhi of the Qing Dynasty, deriving from the “imitating shows” of the Song Dynasty. In the late Qing Dynasty, xiangsheng matured and developed into an art with unique fe... More
Xianxiao Xianxiao
Xianxiao (literally, virtue and filial piety) is a folk singing-and-story-telling art form accompanied by sanxian (a three-stringed plucked instrument). In terms of region, it can be classified into Liangzhou Xianxiao and Hezhou Xianxiao.Liangzhou Xianxiao, also called "Liangzhou Quanshan Shu" (Quanshan Shu, literally story-telling of exhortation for good deeds), is an ancient and long-standing story-telling form popular in towns and c... More
Xianzi Dance Xianzi Dance
Xianzi, also called "Xie", "Ye" and "Baye", is a distinctive huqin of the Tibetan nationality. Xianzi Dance, also known as "Xianzi", is a Tibetan song and dance art form performed with the accompaniment of Xianzi. Xianzi Dance is distributed in eastern Tibet, Yunnan, Sichuan and Qinghai where Tibetan people live in concentrated communities. It is an indispensable self-entertaining song and dance form in th... More
Xiaoyi Wanwan Tone Xiaoyi Wanwan Tone
There are no textural records on the formation time of Wanwan Tone. Related investigation reveals that Li Fanggui in Weinan ever compiled a collection of playscripts named "Ten Play Books" during the Qianlong Period of the Qing Dynasty (1736 - 1795). Analysis on the libretto structure demonstrates that the primary aria of Wanwan Tone had been formed at that time. It is said that the Wanwan Tone in Yangxian County was created by Yong Ch... More
Xingguo Folk Song Xingguo Folk Song
Xingguo County, located in south Jiangxi Province, is governed by Ganzhou City. Over 95% of the population in Xingguo is the descendants of Hakkas that immigrated from the Central Plains. The unique geographical condition and immigration background decide that the Hakkas have been leading a hard life among the mountains and dense woods generation after generation, and they have nothing but the folk song to express their inner feelings in their o... More
Xingshan Folk Song Xingshan Folk Song
Xingshan folk song distributes at all villages and towns of Xingshan County and their around areas to the east, south and north. Because of its unique "Xingshan Third Interval", it is named "Xingshan Folk Song". In the Han Dynasty, Xingshan County belonged to the south district. In the 3rd year of Emperor Jing of Wu (260) during the Three Kingdoms Period, Xingshan County was set in the north of Zigui. The Xingshan Mountain is... More
Yanbei Shuahaier Opera Yanbei Shuahaier Opera
Shuahaier (literally, play with child) Opera, or Keke Tone, is a genre of opera tune named after the Qu tune. It is prevailing in Datong City and the neighboring area in the north of Shanxi Province. Shuahaier Opera is evolved from the tune of Banshe Tune · Shuahaier which was prevalent in the Jin and Yuan Dynasties under the influence of other types of opera music and folk songs. It has a history of over 600 years. Shuahaier Opera was pe... More
Yangko Dance Yangko Dance
The Yangko dance, also called "twisting Yangko dance", is a folk dance most representative in China and a unique collective singing and dancing art. The Yangko dance is smooth, happy and compact in rhythm. Thanks to its jolly scene, abundant dance language, exuberant gestures, and vivid performing style, it is always favored by the Chinese people.The Yangko dance originated from the labor activities of rice seedlings transplant and far... More
Yao ethnic group: sing out wisdom and love through antiphon Yao ethnic group: sing out wisdom and love through antiphon
Singing is a custom of the Yao young people in Jinping, Yunnan Province. Young men visit friends or relatives during festivals where they must sing a song expressing their gratitude to the host so they can enter his or her home. After supper, the guests must sing a song asking for bedclothes and a lamp. Having procured these things, the young men must lie in bed fully awake. When darkness falls, crowds of girls in the village arrive at the host'... More
Yazhou Folk Song Yazhou Folk Song
Yazhou folk song is one of the ancient styles of Hainan folk song. It is popular in Sanya, Huangliu Village of Ledong County and the affiliated territory to ancient Yazhou. The old Yazhou folk song is still popular today. It is a kind of Chinese ballad intonated in Hakka dialect. The folk song has extremely precise rhythm and is an independent integration, originating from countryside of "West Six Kilometers" in ancient Yazhou and spre... More
Yichang Stringed and Woodwind Instrumental Music Yichang Stringed and Woodwind Instrumental Music
Yichang stringed and woodwind instrumental music is unique among all the folk instrumental music in Hubei Province. It takes strings and bamboos as main instruments to perform. It is a variety of artistic instrument which is combined with percussion. As a result, Yichang stringed and woodwind instrumental music is also called "Fine Music". It prevails in east areas of Yichang and is most booming in Yaqueling Town. There are over sixty ... More
Yuhang Rolling Lamp Yuhang Rolling Lamp
Rolling lamp, a folk dance of the Han Chinese, is popular in the area along the Qiantang River including Yuhang, Haiyan, etc. Yuhang rolling lamp originated in Wengmei area of Yuhang in Zhejiang. With a history of over 800 years, it is a folk dance performed in festivals and lantern fairs, and has a strong characteristic of competitive sports.Yuhang is located in the outskirts of Hangzhou, the capital city in the Southern Song Dynasty, so there ... More
Yulin Ditty Yulin Ditty
Yulin ditty is a folk art form in which the actors sit to perform with instrumental accompaniments. It is popular in the downtown area of Yulin City in northwestern Shaanxi Province of China. Story has it that it was brought in by geishas supported by military officials stationed in the Yulin area from Jiangnan (the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River) during the Ming Dynasty, and in its long-term evolvement, absorbed elements of loc... More
Zhoushan Gong and Drum Music Zhoushan Gong and Drum Music
Zhoushan is located in the north-eastern part of Zhejiang Province, east to the Hangzhou Bay and south to the mouth of the Yangtze River. The rich oceanic resources are the foundation of the local people's production and living, and the special production mode and life customs have given birth to distinctive folk arts in Zhoushan, of which the gong and drum music is the representative. The music takes gong, drum, cymbal and sona as its keynote a... More
Ziyang Folk Songs Ziyang Folk Songs
Ziyang folk songs are the general name of folk songs in Ziyang County, Shaanxi Province, and the most typical ones among folk songs in south Shaanxi Province. They have vivid expressions and images, beautiful and appealing melodies, distinctive artistic features and local styles. They are the popular artistic treasure of Ziyang people that were created from centuries of labor. Ziyang is located at the center of South Shaanxi Province and got its... More
Zuoquan Bloom Tune Zuoquan Bloom Tune
Zuoquan County lies in the west side of the main range of Taihang Mountain, bordering eastern Shanxi Province. Known as "Liaozhou" or "Liaoxian County" in ancient times, the county was renamed "Zuoquan County" in commemoration of the famous anti-Japanese general Zuo Quan, who died a heroic death there. Throughout the ages, a wide array of folk music genres were created by and spread among the people, including mount... More