Orchestra, opera house serve community in Xuhui

The Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Yue Opera House and Children's Art Theater of China Welfare Institute opened their first community-level studios in Xuhui District.
Yang Jian / SHINE

Shen Qian, the training manager with the Shanghai Yue Opera House, teaches the typical postures of the Yue Opera at the Hunan subdistrict community cultural activity center.

The city's symphony orchestra and traditional opera house yesterday began performing and giving lectures regularly at local communities.

The Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Yue Opera House and Children's Art Theater of China Welfare Institute yesterday opened their first community-level studios in Hunan subdistrict in downtown Xuhui District.

The activities are organized in the newly renovated five-story community cultural activity center on Wulumuqi Road M. Artists open classes to teach basic skills or perform in the center for the residents. Most of the lectures and performances are free of charge.

"It is the first attempt by local subdistricts to invite the city's major cultural institutes to the community," said Lu Yun, deputy director with the Hunan subdistrict. "Residents are expected to get touch with these cultural activities more often and easier," she said.

Shen Qian, the training manager with the Shanghai Yue Opera House, yesterday began teaching the typical postures of the Yue Opera to the first batch of students at the center.

Yang Jian / SHINE

Residents study Chinese ink painting and calligraphy at the Hunan subdistrict community cultural activity center.

"We hope to promote the traditional opera to not only senior opera enthusiasts but also young white-collars and children at the community center," said Sun Yayan, the Party secretary with the opera house. More classes will be open on singing and performing to meet the demands of the residents, she said.

In another classroom, Li Yanhuan, an artist with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, was giving a lecture about Franz Joseph Haydn, also known as the "father of the symphony." 

Apart from the lectures, residents can enjoy a live performance at the center on weekends or take a shuttle bus to the orchestra to visit the backstage of a symphony, said Zhou Ping, president of the 138-year-old Shanghai Symphony Orchestra.

The Children's Art Theater of China Welfare Institute will present stage dramas at a small theater at the center, mainly for children and their parents or grandparents, said Cai Jinping, president of the children's art theater.

"Children will be invited to play on the stage along with professional performers to encourage them to take more active part in social activities rather than spend hours on iPad or video games," Cai said.

Yang Jian / SHINE

Children play Lego blocks at the Hunan subdistrict community cultural activity center.


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