Kunqu Opera is one of the most popular forms of traditional opera in China today. Kunqu Opera can trace its origins back to the late Ming Dynasty and a small town south of the Yangtze, called Kunshan.
In some quarters, Kunqu Opera is regarded as the ancestor of all opera in China. It's even been described as one of the three sources of world opera.
Kunqu Opera, it's also said, has at one time or another, embraced every influence imaginable, from music and dance, to poetry and the world of the spirit and even the very soul of the Chinese nation. All of which makes it hard to imagine that there was a time when Kunqu Opera completely disappeared.