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Jinan Shadow Play (Jinan Piying Drama)

Originating in the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220), shadow play was brought to Jinan in 1917 and has developed into a folk drama with a local style after about 100 years of inheritance and development.

The Jinan Shadow Play is a performance of planar silhouettes of human figures projected onto a white screen. The silhouettes and other objects are made of leather, which is the reason for the name piying

The exaggerated human figures made of animal hides or paper boards in rough lines are operated by one or several players, who project the shadows on a wide screen through the light and enact stories accompanied by music combining elements from local operas like Xihe Tune, Shandong Qinshu and Henan Zhuizi. The monologues are spoken in Jinan dialect.

The masterpieces of Jinan Shadow Play include the folk tales such as Crane and Turtle, Journey to the West, and Mr Dongguo and the Wolf.

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