Once upon a time


The Jade Leaf Storytelling Theater is housed in an abandoned workshop. Audiences pay 80 yuan — Fuzhou storytelling has been called a living fossil of ancient Chinese art and Chinese rap. It is popular in Fujian and Taiwan provinces and other Southeast Asian countries where people can speak the Fuzhou dialect.
One beat of the gravel on the wooden table and the sounds of cymbals signal the beginning of an age-old storytelling performance. In a heavy Fuzhou dialect, an elderly artist starts telling stories on the podium. His audiences are mostly retirees and senior citizens, who have been ardent fans of the ancient art.
Fuzhou storytelling, which can be traced to the Song Dynasty