Beijing Museum of Traditional Opera is called Beijing Xiqu Bowuguan in Chinese. It lies in Hufang Bridge in Xuanwu District at the site of the Huguang Guildhall and opened to public in 1997. It is also known as the one hundred museum opened in Beijing.
Huguang Guildhall was first built in 1807 in Qing dynasty. There is a set of buildings including the Great Drama Tower, Xiangxian Ancestral Temple, Wenchang Pavilion, Baoshan Hall, Chuwas Hall and Fengyuhuairen Hall. The Huguang Guildhall was once the gathering place for the scholars and the merchants from Hunan and Hubei Prefectures. With a long history, it has profound cultural connotation as well as excellent traditional opera culture. It was a famous site of drama performance for the renowned great drama masters Tan Xinpei, Yu Shuyan and Mei Lanfang all had shows here.
The museum's various exhibits have distinctively artistic characteristics. On display in the exhibition hall are several dozen biographies, cultural relics, and costumes and instruments that trace the history of Chinese traditional opera. Stage photos of Peking opera masters in performance are also exhibited. The most precious exhibits include a picture of Shouyun Xuan Accepting Congratulations, the pass to enter the imperial palace issued to opera star Chen Delin, the imperial phonograph, four famous Peking opera fiddles, and the Liyan Pictorial, all of which are of high artistic value.
The museum currently offers a range of activities, including performances, exhibitions, academic seminars, and foreign cultural exchanges. While during performances, both Chinese and English subtitles are on the screen, and there are also English and Japanese simultaneous interpretation service provided.