April 09, 2005

Money Plaques

04 April 2005 Monday night, Kreta Ayer People’s Theatre

This is the largest of the five money plaques that were on the stage of the Theatre. It had the names of the five main opera artistes with five thousand-dollar notes attached. A money plaque is flower plaque with money attached which cantonese opera fans give to their favourite artistes to show support, appreciation or adoration. It seems to be unique in Singapore. I have not seen money plaques in Hong Kong or China.

Of the eleven nights I was there, there were money plaques on nine nights. There was even one for the orchestra. Most of them have a $1000-dollar note attached.

April 03, 2005

Chinese opera fans more patriotic?

Thursday night’s opera by the Guangdong Academy of Cantonese Opera First Troupe was about an emperor who, fearing that his brother would take the throne away from him, schemed to get rid of his brother. His brother was one of those patriots who stuck stubbornly to the belief ‘If the emperor wants his subject to die, then he has to die.’ Though he was aware of the emperor’s intention, he was prepared to die for the sake of the Country.

One opera fan commented that people who watch Chinese operas are more patriotic because in Chinese opera there are many such stories about patriotism and sacrifice for one’s country.

More patriotic? It has very broad meanings.

Perhaps he meant that there are many patriotic people among Chinese opera fans or that the percentage of patriotic people among Chinese opera fans is higher than that of any other fan group.

For the same reason, we can also say that Chinese opera fans are ‘more filial’.