The domestic musical "Qu Yuan" was staged Friday at the Beijing Century Theater ahead of China's Dragon Boat Festival which falls on June 7.
Focusing on the last night of Qu Yuan's life, the musical unveils the innermost emotions of the great poet of the Warring States Period (475 B.C.-221 B.C.). It blurs the line between reality and imagination by visualizing the scenes described in his best-known works.
The Dragon Boat Festival is said to commemorate the death of Qu, who drowned himself in the Miluo River after he was banished and accused of treason for his well-intended advice to the king.
Legend has it that upon learning of his death, locals raced boats to find his body in the river and dropped rice in the water in the hope that it would distract fish from eating Qu's body. These became traditions of the Dragon Boat Festival observed to this day.
The musical will also be performed at a cultural park by the Miluo River from June 6 to 10.