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A stage performance depicting the sights and sounds of old Beijing has recently premiered at Geology Hall in downtown Beijing.
Folk artists of the old generation mesmerized audiences with their flair, which nowadays can only be seen about once a year at temple fairs.
The hawking performance, presented by folk artist Zhang Zhenyuan and his disciples on stage, had the packed house reminiscing about the good old days in Beijing.
Audiences were guided on a tour that transcended the restraints of time as they followed the ups and downs of a Beijing family living in the Shi Chahai area.
The show offered a panoramic view of the lifestyle in old Beijing. And folk artists spiced things up with their stunning performances including juggling, diabolo wizardry, and umbrella spinning.
Among the twenty artists performing on stage, half of them are over sixty. Although the rehearsal for the show last only one month, these artists have been preparing for years.
Chen Shou'an, folk artist, said, "We are old. I don't want my flair to go with me to the other world. I hope it can be carried on."
Song Zhenzhong, folk artist, said, "All this used to be the necessity for making a living. But now it's turned into art."
Organizer Zhang Zhen voluntarily put on the show by spending 60-thousand yuan of her own money to cover all expenses, just in a hopes that the cultural legacy of old Beijing can be treasured by as many as possible.
Zhang Zhen, organizer, said, "I hope that more people of the younger generation remember our fine cultural tradition. I think it was all worth it."
Tickets for the show cost only ten yuan each. Zhang said she never expected any proceeds. What she and her invited artists do expect is that the art forms will live from generation to generation.