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Ballad of Liu Sanjie


10:40, August 05, 2011

The ballad of Liu Sanjie (Third Sister in the Liu family) is a type of folk song prevalent in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Yizhou City is the representative region where this type of ballad is prevailing. Hence it is identified as the hometown of Liu Sanjie.

The ballad of Liu Sanjie (Third Sister in the Liu family) is a type of folk song prevalent in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

As a legendary figure in folklores of the Zhuang minority, Liu Sanjie was said to be extraordinarily bright as a child who was capable of singing about every object she pointed at. Due to her ability to compose and sing elegant and touching songs independently, Liu Sanjie was dubbed as "Song Fairy". Although legends about her vary in different ethnic minorities, it is undoubted that the Zhuang people invariably respect and love the song fairy. There exist statues and temples of Liu Sanjie in numerous areas in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Every time a new Zhuang songbook is published, people will offer one in front of her statue. During ballad festivals held in some areas, people will uplift her statue and parade as the commencement of the festivals. Also known as "Song Fairy Festival", "Sanyuesan" (March 3) is the grandest ballad festival in the region. It is said that such a folk memorial festival was formed and celebrated in honor of Liu Sanjie.

The ballad of Liu Sanjie can roughly be classified into seven types: songs of life, production, love, rite, riddle, story and old songs of creating world. It is featured by singing-style communication, lyric-like nature, distinctive ethnicity, comparatively integral inheritance, as well as rich and colorful varieties. Accordingly, it has been widely spread and exerted profound influence on people in China or even around the world. More importantly, it is capable of displaying the enchantment of living-style culture of traditional Chinese folk art. Other than having research value of cultural history as a testimony of ethnic history and affection expressing modes, the ballad of Liu Sanjie is of high research value in many aspects such as ethnonymics, anthropology, sociology and aesthetics.


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