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Cantonese Opera in Hong Kong

Towards the end of the 19th century, many Cantonese opera artists came to Hong Kong from Guangzhou to seek new performing opportunities and make their living here. The popular venues for their shows included the Sing Ping, Ko Sing and Chung Hing theatres.

By the 1920s, there appeared the “mega troupes”, which boasted a mixed cast of stars from Guangdong and Hong Kong. They were active in Guangzhou, Macao and Hong Kong. By the 1930s and 1940s, there were two most popular troupes led by two legends of the time - Kok Sin Sing Opera Troupe led by Sit Kok Sin, and Tai Ping Opera Troupe, led by Ma Sze Tsang. It was the heyday of Cantonese opera, motivated by the two visionaries in the art form with their dedication to excellence and innovation. Their productions not only came from the traditional repertory but also new, original plays. From libretti, costume, music, scenography to presentation, they were pioneers in all aspects of the genre. During those years, the troupes also gave travelling shows in the rural areas.


  • Photo of Astor Theatre in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon