The Trial at the Execution Ground

June Snow

Singers:
Sun Kim-Long & Angela Keung

The well-known tragic folk story of Dau-Ngor ( 竇娥) that was made famous by a Yuan Dynasty play in the 13th Century has inspired generations of regional opera in China. When the renowned Tong Dik-Seng 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 song depicts the high drama that halts the execution of Dau-Ngor describes the return of her husband as a high official who presides over the re-trial. Through all the twists and turns, the truth is uncovered and his faithful wife is vindicated and the villain is exposed.
Wong Chiu-Kwan |
  王超群, M.H.

In the mid-1960s, Wong Chiu-Kwan learned the art of acting from Master Tam San-San, who excelled in playing the role of the female lead in Cantonese opera. She studied “cheung hong” from Master Lau Wing-Chuen. In the 1980s she performed throughout South East Asia, and became a leading female artist in Cantonese opera after she returned to Hong Kong in the nineties. She is famous for playing female military roles, especially as the general on bound feet. Over the years she has partnered with many leading male artists, including Man Chi- Sui, Yuen Siu-Fai, Lo Ka-Ying, Ng Chin-Fung, Lung Kwun-Tin, Lee Lung, among others in forming various Cantonese Opera Troupes.

Apart from being famous for her mastery of the art of performing on bound feet, she is also recognized for her contributions in promoting Cantonese opera education and community work. In 2010 she was honoured as The Artist of the Year (Opera) by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council, and awarded a certificate by the Home Affairs Bureau; in 2018 she was appointed as the Artistic Director of the Cantonese Opera Rookies’ Performance Series hosted by the Chinese Artists Association of Hong Kong.

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