“Wotou Hall” : The Graduation Ceremony of Xiang Yu Drama Club’s Members

Homage to the Classics and to the Memory of Youth


“Wotou Hall”, the graduation show of Xiang Yu Drama Club’s members, was performed in the evenings of May 25th and 27th. The well-prepared performance “Wotou Hall” started with the melodious sound of the harmonica.  

“Wotou Hall” is a play produced by Beijing People's Art Theatre to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the establishment of People's Republic of China. This play reveals life experiences and psychological courses of different people from various social classes in the old Beijing. It shows happiness, sadness, hope, and desires of the ordinary people who used to live in Wotou Hall, and young peoples’ expectations for the establishment of the brand new People's Republic of China. All the staff, including the main actors and the members behind the curtains, spent half a year to get ready to perform the hard script of “Wotou”. 

The show began: the drama was full of old Beijing’s anecdotes and characteristics. After months of arduous practice, the passionate actors and actresses vividly portrayed the characters. The scenery was elaborately designed to reproduce the typical image of old Beijing’s courtyards. A crowd of strangers perfectly spoke Beijing dialect: their humorous lines, like “it is really not easy” and “the heaven doesn’t fall, but the earth crumbles”, amused the audience and won warm applauses.


At the end, the curtain fell and the real life started once again. Outside the stage there was the sadness of the graduation day, and the unwillingness to leave Xiang Yu drama club’s members and friends. Bi Meng, the actor who played Xiao Pengda, emotionally said: “My graduation ceremony is not the one held in the new gym, it’s the play performed by our Xiang Yu drama club!”

Reported by Shang Yi,Wu Leyan

Photographs by Wu Leyan, Dong Lubei
Translated by Fu Liya, Fu Feifei
Proofread by Letizia Vallini

Nankai University

No.38 Tongyan Road, Jinnan District, Tianjin , P.R. China 300350

No.94 Weijin Road,  Nankai District, Tianjin, P.R.China  300071