On January 29, an ethnic opera of Dai nationality“Hai Han”took the stage in Nongmo Village, Muse City. The show was presented by Protection and Exhibition Center of Dai Opera Heritage from Dehong Prefecture in Yunnan Province at 19:30 local time.
From 27 to 29 this month, a new arena was set up for the Dai opera performers from China. Splendid shows including “Hai Han””Nan Xila”” Er Bing and Sang Luo”were brought to the audience in Muse by 47 members of the Protection and Exhibition Center crew. Muse City lies in the administrative division of Shan State in Myanmar, which is mainly inhabited by Shan ethnic group. Dai ethnic in China and Shan ethnic in Myanmar share the same origin in history. Therefore, languages and cultures of the two nationalities resemble each other a lot.
Deputy director of the Protection and Exhibition Center, Dao Baorui, told the reporter that performance like this existed between China and Myanmar a decade ago and in those days the cultural communication between two sides were vibrant and frequent. However, such kind of event had been suspended for 8 years and was renewed at the end of last year. Dai Opera could become the bridge for expanding cultural cooperation and deepening the friendship of two countries beyond the geographical boundary.
“We have many thing in common. For instance, the two ethnic groups have similar language,custom and life style.We feel at home here.” Mr. Dao said. Each night during the event, the arena welcomed an increasing number of viewers. Thousands Villagers in the vicinity walked or rode on tractor or motorbikes to Nongmo to enjoy the performance, making the arena a lively place for gathering.
“Hai Han”, narrating the story of Dai heroes, impressed Aik Bow deeply. Aik Bow was a local resident, and like many others, he was reluctant to leave the arena, hoping to see more of the Dai Opera. Expecting the performance every night even became a daily routine for him. Personally, he was depressed to see the end of the event.”Hope they will come again.”,Aik Bow said.
Dehong Prefecture shares a long border with the Union of Myanmar in its western, northern and southern regions. The boundary line with a total length of 503.8 kilometers couldn’t separate more than 600 villages on Chinese side from their twin villages in Myanmar. Ethnic people from Dai, Jingpo and Lisu nationalities live in the border region of both China and Myanmar for centuries. Intimate connections could be found in many aspects of their languages and religions. The bond between people living on two sides of the border were even more consolidated by trade,marriage and economic as well as cultural cooperation through decades. As a result, Dehong is now regarded as the “golden port” for opening-up in southwestern regions and the frontier in the application of China’s “economic bridgehead” policy.