With a history of around 200 years, Beijing opera (京; Jīngjù) of China is a national treasure, which appeared as such after more than half a century of combining and integrating various kinds of opera. The very beginnings of the opera were marked by the appearance of the four big Huiban opera Troupes, who entered the capital and merged with Hanju opera, Kunqu opera, Yiyang opera, and Luantan. It occurred during the reign of the Emperor Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty in 1790. After so many years, Beijing Opera today is the most important of all operas in China, and it is quite diverse in the repertoire, with a significant number of artists and people who are willing to come and watch the performances. This is the reason why it became a huge part of everyday life in China, and started playing an important role in Chinese culture. Beijing Opera is not a simple performance of opera singing, but rather a combination of singing, action, dialogue, fighting, and dancing, which altogether serve to present the story in an enormously original and excellent way, familiarizing the audience with all of the characters, feelings, fears, and hopes.
From the very beginning of the 19th century, Beijing Opera was started to perform and started being very influential, even among the noble classes. The performances took place, not only in folk places, but also in the palace. The fact that the doors of the palace were quite welcoming to Beijing Opera helped improve their performances, make-up, and stage setting and brought it to the place it has today, as the most important and most famous.
Liyuan Theater is a great place to watch traditional Beijing Opera. Other theaters where you can enjoy the Beijing Opera are Chang’an Grand Theater (CNY80/100/180/280/380), Beijing Opera Theater (CNY50/80/100/120/380), and Mei Lanfang Theater (CNY50).