Tang Music and Dance

Pa Tou (Small Piece)Pa Tou (Small Piece) 【Op.59】

  • Premiere: Chungshan Hall, Taipei, Taiwan, R.O.C. April 8, 1967.
  • Original Choreographer: Unknown
  • Music: Dahshy Tune, Small Piece
  • Music/Dance Reconstruction: Liu, Feng-Shueh
  • Dancers: Lu, Yi-chuan/Lo, Ching-cheng
  • Costume Design: Weng, Meng-ching, Liu, Feng-shueh
  • Mask Design: Yang, Chung-fa
  • Prop Design: Lu, Bing-ron
  • Lighting Design: Tommy Wong
  • Stage Design: Chang, I-cheng
  • Master Engineering: Lee, Chun-yu
  • Stage Manager: Liu, Chia-ming

The music and dance Pa Tou originated in India and was later brought to China. During the T’ang Dynasty (618-907 A. D.), it was classified by scholars under the category “singing and dancing.” According to the Tangshu (T’ang Book): “Pa Tou originated from regions west of Tunhuang. It was about a man from this region who was devoured by a wild beast. His son then went seeking the beast and eventually killed it. The movements in this dance were meant to represent the events of the story. Around 729-748 A.D., Pa Tou was taken by a Brahmin priest, known in Chinese as Fo-Che, to Japan via China. There, the music and dance have been preserved. This piece was reconstructed according to inscriptions found in the caves of Tunhuang, historical research, and the music and dance notation approved by the Japanese imperial court in 1876. It had it’s 20th Century premiere in 1967.