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A Leading Performer of Peking Opera: Zhang Junqiu


Zhang Junqiu (1920--1997) was a topPeking Opera performer. Zhang is remembered for his excellent performance and his efforts made in inheriting and developing the quintessence of traditional Chinese opera.

Zhang Junqiu began drama learning at the age of 13 and his debut at the age of 15. He has prevented some Peking Opera plays from being lost by performing 120 itemsin various schools. He also trained a group of youngsters for the art as well. In 1963, Zhang went toHong KongandMacaoto perform. In 1979, he started to teach opera in theBeijingDramaSchool. In 1990, Zhang Junqiu won the Lifelong Artistic Achievement Prize awarded by the Sino-US Art Association in US andNew YorkLincolnArtCenter.

His voice was sweet, loud and clear, and his appearance graceful and handsome. The representative works of Zhang Junqiu are:The Orphan of The Zhaos, The West Chamber andLeifengTower,and so on.

His elder son, Zhang Xuejin, is a famousLaosheng(elderly character type) in Pekinig Opera.

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