Chen Keqin – Inheritor of Huadeng Music in Hongta District, Yuxi 

Brief Introduction

Chen Keqin(陈克勤), Han nationality, was born in Hongta district, Yuxi city in 1935, who is the inheritor of Lantern music(花灯音乐). Influenced by his family since his childhood, Chen Keqin loves lantern performance art very much.

Chen Keqin - Inheritor of Huadeng Music in Hongta District, Yuxi 
Chen Keqin – Inheritor of Huadeng Music in Hongta District, Yuxi


After graduating from high school, he joined the publicity team of Yuxi Federation of Industry and Commerce(玉溪工商联), and participated in the preparation of Yuxi People’s Experimental Troupe(人民实验剧团). In 1952, Chen Keqin joined the lantern group of the troupe  (later renamed Lantern Troupe).  During the 7 years  in the troupe, Chen Keqin was particularly fond of studying lantern singing, drama literature and musical instrument accompaniment, and was carefully taught by famous artists — Xue Guoxing(薛国兴), Yang Jiongming(杨炯明) and Wu Jiashun(吴家顺). In lantern show, especially in lantern singing, he not only inherited the skills of the older generation of lantern artists, but also brought forth the new, and gradually formed his own singing characteristics.

He is an all-round artist, also as a director, band accompaniment, can be said to be versatile. At the height of his acting career, Chen Keqin was wrongly labeled a “Rightist(右派) in 1958 and spent 22 years in prison.


For a long time, Chen Keqin is committed to Yuxi lanterns’ creation, performance of the play and popularized work. He collected more than 1.3 million words about Yuxi lantern information and created 13 lantern plays for amateur performers. In his creation, he paid great attention to the application of local customs and slang in traditional plays, making lantern songs easy to understand and popular with the public. Many of his works won awards.

In 1989, he won the Advanced Worker Award(先进工作者奖)of the national key scientific research project –“ Chinese Opera Records — Yunnan Volume”(《中国戏曲志·云南卷》). The Drama Records of Yuxi Area(《玉溪地区戏曲志》)edited by him won the third prize in the compilation of historical records of Yunnan province. He is also a member of Chinese Dramatists Association(中国戏剧家协会会员) and Chinese Society of Mass Culture(中国群众文化学会会员).

Translated by Bella Ren/任新月