iSurprise Old Tai Ping Theatre

Where Chan gave Fleur the rouge box

"Where is Tai Ping Theatre? I remember there used to be a Tai Ping Theatre here. I used to watch Cantonese operas there. Have we passed it?"
— Fleur

After walking into Yuen-Ting's newsroom, Fleur follows the journalist on his tram home to Shek Tong Tsui. While the Ding Ding leisurely traverses through the city, Fleur tries to pinpoint where she is and what has happened to the Hong Kong she once knew.

"I only liked Cantonese operas such as The Gold-leafed Chrysanthemum, Night of Autumn Happiness, and Chan Sai-mei. We used to buy front-row seats, ten couches in a row; $3 a seat."
— Fleur

Yuen-Ting tells her that Tai Ping Theatre was demolished long ago and became a 7-Eleven.

"I've always wanted to learn opera. I never liked to do business."
— Chan

Chan Chan Chen-Peng's parents want him to take over their medicine business, but his heart lies at the opera. Much to his parents' dismay, he decides to give up the shopkeeping business and tries to become an actor. Fleur wants to help Chan follow his dream and lands him a job as an apprentice for a Cantonese opera master in Tai Ping Theatre. Outside this theatre, Chan buys Fleur a rouge box pendant as a token of his love and gratitude, which she has carried around ever since.

One of Hong Kong’s grandest theatres

Tai Ping Theatre opened its doors in 1904. The three-storey building was one of the largest theatres in Hong Kong: it could accommodate over 1,000 people. Back then, theatres were built to be multifunctional: people came to watch movies, circus performances, Cantonese opera, and attend social functions. Tai Ping was the celebrity hangout back in the day; people came from far and wide to see their favourite famous stars perform here. Courtesans from Yi Hung and other nearby brothels made up a large part of the audience. In 1932, Tai Ping underwent a makeover and expanded to accommodate an even bigger audience of 2,000 people. During WWII, the Japanese military used it as a warehouse. The famous theatre was demolished in 1981, a mere six years before 'Rouge' was filmed. It was replaced by a nondescript commercial building, which still stands here today, four decades later.

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