Xi'an Custom Renewal Society
en.xa.gov.cn     Updated: 2019-01-31

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Established in 1912, the Xi'an Custom Renewal Society, formerly known as the Shaanxi Society for Acting Training (Lingxue she), is renowned as one of the three oldest companies of performing arts in the world along with the Bolshoi and the Paris Opera Ballet. In 2006, the theatre of the Custom Renewal Society was inscribed on the list of national foremost-protected cultural heritage sites. On Dec 2, 2017, it was included in the second group of China's 20th-century architectural heritages.

Since its founders Li Tongxuan (1860-1932) and Sun Renyu (1872-1934) were the members of the Chinese Alliance, the purpose of the Society was to help in improving social education. The Custom Renewal Society was China’s first Qinqiang Opera group that integrated opera training, artistic talents cultivation and cultural education with performances. The troupe has written more than 800 plays in fewer than 90 years. Its repertoire includes Three Drops of Blood (Sandi xue), Flaming Steed (Huoyan ju), The Xi’an Incident (Xi'an shibian), Bride of Liuhe Bay (Liuhewan de xinniang), Sima Qian and The Camel Lane (Luotuo xiang).

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The Custom Renewal Society has trained nearly 1,000 students for every Qinqiang Opera company and troupe in Northwest China since its establishment. Such famous Qinqiang opera performers as Liu Yuzhong (1896-1982, acclaimed as "leading actor of the Male Character"), Wang Tianmin (1913-1972, acclaimed as "Mei Lanfang of the Western Capital"), Meng Eyun (1923-1982, "most loved actress") and Xiao Ruolan (1934-1996, acclaimed as "Queen of Qinqiang Opera" ) all came from the Society.