A cross talk team named Xiha Crosstalk Group (Xiha for short) perform in traditional tea houses in Beijing four times a week for 7 years. Its tickets are always sold out two weeks in advance, and performers have become household names among cross talk fans in the capital.
In less than a year since Xiha came into being, the group has turned cross talk, a Chinese traditional oral art dating back to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), into a way of life among youngsters. One, two or more performers on stage, dressed in traditional Chinese gowns, make humorous and satirical comments that reflect or comment on daily life. They always say they are here only to bring joy to others. But if people are lucky to get inspired by the show in some way, that would be a delightful surprise.
"Our goal is quite simple, that is to bring cross talk back to fashion. Many young people used to treat cross talk as out-of-date, and full of tasteless old jokes. The task fell on us, the youngsters, to hand down this traditional art, and only we can achieve that." They said.
"Their performance is very interesting. I would say it particularly fit for the taste of youngsters who were born after 1980. Their stories give me an up-close look to Beijing locals' life."—Audience
"It's very amusing, especially the last piece. To enjoy cross talk in a tea house feels so different from watching it on television. That's more relaxing!" —Audience