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Chinatown Opera Theater in North America$
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Nancy Yunhwa Rao

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252040566

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252040566.001.0001

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Everyday Practice and the Imaginary

Everyday Practice and the Imaginary

(p.1) Introduction Everyday Practice and the Imaginary
Chinatown Opera Theater in North America

Nancy Yunhwa Rao

University of Illinois Press

Using lyrics, artifacts, memoir, playbills, etc. from within the Chinese community, the Introduction chapter offers a much-needed perspective on Chinatown opera theaters in North America during its golden era of the 1920s. Attention is drawn to issues such as social memory, everyday life, and bodily performance to reveal how these opera performances at these theaters were as satisfying as it was meaningful. By Various types of documents, recordings, sources and immigration files constitute the “archive” of Chinatown opera theaters for this book, one that allow us to reimagine the theaters, the dynamic ways that opera were presented and the transnational route across Pacific that the performers traveled.

Keywords:   opera, lyrics, performance, archive, transpacific, Wayson Choy, everyday, historiography, transnational, Chinatown, performing network, social memory

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