Embroidering the Fragrant Sachet

From the opera June Snow

Sun Kim-Long & Wong Chiu-Kwan

The well-known tragic folk tale of Dau-Ngor ( 竇娥) was made famous by a Yuan Dynasty play in the 13th century China and has inspired generations of regional opera in China. When the renowned Tong Dik-Seng ( 唐滌生) re-adapted this story for a Cantonese opera with Yam Kim-Fai and Fong Yim-Feng playing the male and female leads in the 1950s, he gave more depth to the characters and heightened the subplot of romantic love. This love song, placed near the opening of the opera when the new bride presents her husband with a satchel on which she has embroidered ten messages of love, is indicative of the lyrical and romantic power in this opera.