Play Celebrates Sun Yat-Sen-Led Overthrow Of Qing Dynasty (1644–1912)
It’s been an interesting month in the world of Taiwan-Mainland China ties. On May 4, the two sides opened their first-ever cross-straits tourism offices (in Beijing and Taipei), designed to promote and increase travel and cultural exchanges. As Jing Daily wrote recently, since travel restrictions were loosened in 2008, Taiwan has seen a steadily increasing flow of mainland Chinese tourists hitting its shores and buoying retailers hit hard by dwindling numbers of Japanese and Western tourists. This year, Taiwan expects to receive over 1 million mainland Chinese tourists, which would see their numbers surpassing Japanese tourists for the first time since tourism records began in 1964.
Along with more cooperation in the tourism industry, cross-straits ties have benefited from cultural exchange. This week, Chen Henghao, president of the Taipei Film and Drama Business Union, signed an agreement with Cao Jianping, director of the Guangzhou Performing Arts Center to cooperate on the production of a play commemorating the 100th anniversary of the 1911 Xinhai Revolution, which eventually overthrew the Qing, China’s last imperial dynasty.
According to People’s Daily, the play — which will feature actors from both sides of the Taiwan Straits — will focus on the abortive Huanghuagang Uprising (黄花岗起义) of 1911, in which 72 Tongmenhui revolutionaries died in the last unsuccessful uprising against the Qing. As Chen Henghao told reporters this week, the varied backgrounds of the producers and performers illustrates the importance of the 1911 revolution on both sides of the straits. “The playwright is from Guangzhou, director is from Taiwan, and actors are from both sides,” Chen said, “This is the first time that we have cooperated with each other so deeply and comprehensively.”
Over the course of 2011, the as-yet-unnamed play will be staged five times in Taiwan and more than 10 times in mainland China.