Opera revisited

On January 20, 2015, in Opera, photography, by omegaforest

After a few months of hiatus, I am back at the opera. The backstage to be exact. It was a new year, new start and looking for new inspirations.

I still spent most of my time backstage. The makeup moments were so magical. You almost felt that time had freeze for a few seconds.

Expect the unexpected

Expect the unexpected

Young or old, they memorized their lines. No shortcuts

Young or old, they memorized their lines. No shortcuts

There were no makeup artist on backstage. All performers were responsible for their own makeup.

Hairdo

Hairdo

Drawing the eye brown...

Drawing the eye brown…

and adding some nice macho moustache!

and adding some nice macho mustache!

Objects

The troupe master also double up as musician

The troupe master also double up as musician

Something we seldom get to see. Rehearsal.

At times, the troupe would perform new show. We would see them do a walk through and rehearsed their lines.

At times, the troupe would perform new show. We would see them do a walk through and rehearsed their lines.

A Joyful Day at the Backstage

On October 26, 2013, in Opera, by omegaforest

I was told specifically by the troupe to come today. The temple had specially requested for a show and it was one that they seldom performed.

Backstage:
The entire troupe was here today. There were even new faces as they required additional actors. The atmosphere was slightly different too. It was a lot lively. Someone told me to take pictures of the Goddess of Mercy, I tried to find her but found that she was still dolling up! Well, the world of mortals!

I spotted uncle 盘 giving some acting tips on monkey gestures. He is usually very quiet but when he performs, he’s a gem!

Master giving pointers to Monkey (JR)

Master giving pointers to Monkey (JR)

Today’s show is all about the heavenly immortals. It was the first time I saw the Jade Emperor and Goddess of Mercy. I was wondering what their conversation was about?

A conversation with Goddess of Mercy

A conversation with Goddess of Mercy

Guess who is on stage?

Guess who is on stage?

Happy that she has done her part!

Happy that she has done her part!

There was a lot of energy on stage, thus a lot of photo opportunities. At times, I had to stay really focused. It was visually pleasing just to watch them. Some were waiting at the side for their turn at the stage. Some were having a quick conversation while others where changing into a new costume.

Coming in....

Coming in….

Very busy at the backstage as everyone is looking out for their turn to go on stage

Everyone is looking out for their turn to go on stage

Going to Pray...

Going to Pray…

Regardless of age, I see happy faces. People who are devoted to the show. People who performed for the gods.

A first for me...

A first for me…
 
 

more candid shots

more candids

whose is younger>

who is younger?

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An Afternoon at a Teochew Opera 老赛桃源潮剧团

On October 8, 2013, in Opera, by omegaforest

I climbed that ladder again, this time to the backstage of a new troupe, 老赛桃源潮剧团.

The backstage was setup in a similar way but what delighted me was the fact that they hang the costume high up. It was a beautiful backdrop.

Stage setup

Stage setup

Backstage

Backstage

The members were preparing for the noon show. It was a full cast and the backstage was almost packed. 老赛桃源潮剧团 is a Teochew troupe. You would realized that their costumes and accessories were a lot more intricate.

There were also more male actors here, I counted three. The younger one looked to be in his twenties.

Their makeup technique were also different from the Hokkien Opera. I noticed how precise they were in using brushes to paint the eyebrows.

Observing an actor making up

Observing an actor making up

A senior helping out

A senior helping out

One of the actress asked what I am shooting for? I replied in my rusty Teochew….and somehow it mixed with Hokkien. Need brushing up.

Love the comradely here where they helped each other in dressing up.

Love the comradely here where they helped each other in dressing up.

Look at the details on the costumes

Look at the details on the costumes

The troupe members were a nice bunch of people. Soon some where posing for me. In a matter to 30 minutes, the entire backstage was filled with colors.

Dun you love them!

Dun you love them!

Shades of Green

Shades of Green

A burst of colors

A burst of colors

The stage was also a lot more elaborate. Instead of wooden panels, the sides where filled with full length photos of the troupe members. It does portray a much modern look.

A side view of the stage

A side view of the stage

Love the layering of decor at the top

Love the layering of decor at the top

Amazing colors

Amazing colors

The members invited me for another shoot in the evening. They highlighted that the lighting effects are much better at night. Looking forward to an evening with 老赛桃源潮!

View more photo from this troupe at my Flickr.

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