Fort Wayne Sister Cities Welcomes Taizhou Luantan Opera Company

January 30th, 2017

In 2012, Taizhou China was the fourth city to be adopted as a Sister City of Fort Wayne,  IN. The mission for Fort Wayne Sister Cities is: “Globally advancing friendship and Peace through educational, cultural and economic exchanges.” 

To celebrate their 5-year anniversary in 2017, Fort Wayne Sister Cities is welcoming Taizhou Luantan Opera Company to the community of Fort Wayne from March 16-25.

This will be the first time the Taizhou Luantan Opera's company of 26 singers, instrumentalists, dancers, acrobats and city officials from the city of Taizhou have visited the United States. 

Want to learn more about the Opera? Here's an informational Q&A.

Traditional Chinese opera and why is it special to Taizhou, China?

Traditional Chinese Opera is different from Western Opera with dramatic make-up, songs, colorful costumes, dance and acrobatics representing traditional Chinese stories that date back over 400 years to the Ming Dynasty. It is very unique to the Chinese culture and is a different kind of opera from the European Opera because of the different instruments and their unique vocal production. The fact that Taizhou has a rich history of Chinese Opera makes it very special city. In 2011, the troupe went to Germany to participate in Europe’s largest and oldest International Cultural Festival performances and won the highest honor. The Fort Wayne Sister Cities is very excited to bring them to the United States for the first time at the Embassy Theatre on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. for a public performance. Tickets are on sale. You may get tickets for the opera directly from the Embassy Theatre Box Office, Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

How does the Taizhou Opera serve the local community?

Today, so much of music is heard from recordings or on radio and TV. The Fort Wayne Sister Cities would like to offer the public and especially to young students, the opportunity to hear and see magnificent performances of the Taizhou Opera, which they may never witness “live” unless they travel abroad to China.
Sister Cites is also collaborating with FAME, Foundation for Art and Music for Education by having the opera company perform at their annual FAME Festival on March 18. The group will perform for students from K-8 in schools in the metropolitan area of Fort Wayne. This will be the first time school students will be introduced to authentic “live” Chinese style opera. Sister Cities is providing a full concert on Sunday, March 19, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. for the general public. It is an important goal to educate the public of the arts of all sister cities (Takaoka, Japan; Gera, Germany; Plock, Poland, Taizhou, China and Mawlamyine, Myanmar, our newest Friendship City). 

To share the arts of Sister Cities is the way to building friendships. Music is the universal language, which can bring people together in peace.

- By Dorothy Kittaka Co-chair of Taizhou Opera Committee