Vancouver Cantonese Opera performers in makeup. (Photo:

Cantonese opera music, makeup and more revealed in free workshop in Surrey

Outreach program offered by Vancouver Cantonese Opera company

The world of Cantonese opera will be explored during a free event in Fleetwood on Saturday afternoon (June 8).

Rosa Cheng, artistic director of Vancouver Cantonese Opera, offers a closer look at the company’s music, makeup and more in the two-and-a-half-hour session at Fleetwood Library (15996 84th Ave., Surrey), starting at 1 p.m.

The event is held as part of the company’s outreach program.

“We are the only company in Vancouver – actually, in Canada – doing this kind of workshop,” said Cheng, who lives in the Newton area.

Her presentation will detail all facets of Cantonese opera, with music and videos.

“We will have two performers having their makeup done, and usually people don’t get to see that unless they are backstage at the theatre,” Cheng noted.

Last year, similar workshops were held at four libraries in Surrey, she added.

At the event in Fleetwood, people are invited to “come and experience everything it takes to put on a Cantonese opera performance,” according to an advisory. “The audience will have the opportunity to witness detailed preparations, including applying the signature Chinese opera makeup, doing hair and putting on costumes. It will be followed by a presentation with live narration on character roles, stage techniques and a live performance. Everyone is welcome.”

For more details, call the library at 604-598-7346.

Vancouver Cantonese Opera was founded in 2000.

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