TEI CHONG WONG
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On the 24th day of the 9th month
of the Lunar Calendar, there is Tei Chong Wong (Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva - 梵語) Festival
featuring Chinese Opera.
Young lady performing Hokkien / Hoklo Chinese opera during Tei Chong Wong festival
in Sau Mau Ping.
Similar to high professional Cantonese troupe, this small troupe has also
somebody helping to keep the clothing.
This troupe is using Hokkien Chinese dialect.
It is part of the numerous Oral Traditions and Expressions in China and Hong Kong.
Some local people cannot understand so programmable LED signs, managed by computer,
display the text in traditional characters. The sign is on the right side of this picture.
There are such outdoor programmable LED signs for the audience to understand and
indoor programmable LED signs for performers to remember the text.
Mobile Apps such as "WeChat" is nowaday used to share
pictures with China Opera performers. A few years ago, a way to thank the performers was
to print pictures for them.
This chinese opera sequence features the emperor and multiple generals and officers.
Many performers are married and have husband / wife in the troupe.
It seems that performers marry quite early, i.e around 20 to 22 years old.
Some Chinese opera performers bring their young baby during such trip
to Hong Kong.
One of the performers was 48 years old and was coming in Hong Kong since year 1993.
He was working hard to pay university for his daughter!
Chinese opera performers get 200 Yuan a day including basic food and lodging.
Lodging is basic and inside the Chinese opera theater!
Tents are located inside the backstage.
Outside there are additional temporary constructions, i.e. table for meals, kitchen
and bathroom to wash clothes. The temple includes also toilets and bathrooms.
There is one entrance / exit directly in the backstage.
There is very limited room compared to a backstage for Cantonese opera.
On the top of the stage and on each side also, there are two thin cords including folded
Those folded banknotes can be seen during Hoklo Chinese opera only. It is belief
from performers wishing to get rewards from the audience!
Traditional Hokkien Opera Music is really different from Cantonese
Chinese opera or Teochew / Chiu Chow Chinese opera.
Some parts of this Hokkien opera are more like theater sequences and there is even
no music played during some monologues.
Those red bills are covered with Chinese characters. They may indicate
the coming festival timetable.
Many Hoklo people in Hong Kong worked in construction jobs and
especially the drainage activities.
Those red bills summarize also the name of the various people having given a donation for
This temple is linked to the Sau Mau Ping flooding, which happened
40 years ago.
This is the kitchen used in the temple for preparation of vegetarian meals.
This temple also organizes free lunch for the elderly people.
Donations for the deity and some golden plates to be distributed during the last evening.
On the last evening, a ceremony for the election of the next chairman to be responsible of next year
event organisation happens. Election is said to be selected by the gods.
On the last day during the performance, an interlude happens with the official nomination
of the new committee and some honorary tablets are given. A huge crown was present.
Last day for Chinese opera! The troupe performed during ten days.
It is time to say good bye.
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