Translocal Mobility: Hakka Opera Betrayal Inspired from Shakespeare’s Lost Play Cardenio.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter traces the origin of Shakespeare’s lost play Cardenio, and comments on the Hakka Opera Betrayal. Lewis Theobald claimed that his Double Falsehood was adapted from William Shakespeare and John Fletcher’s lost play Cardenio. The Hakka Opera Betrayal (2014, Taipei) is inspired by Shakespeare’s lost play Cardenio and is staged by Zom-Hsing Hakka Opera Troupe. The Hakka performance script takes references from Betrayal, the Chinese translation by Ching-Hsi Perng and Chen Feng, inspired by Cardenio in English written by Stephen Greenblatt and Charles Mee. It is performed in Hakka language with Hakka music, features Taiwan’s local culture, and is presented by Hakka Opera, similar to the stylization of Chinese Jingju. I argue that, while theatrical mobility may exist in different adaptations, glocalization can integrate translocal cultures and theatrical performing methods. The issues of culture, sex, marriage, betrayal, madness, and interculturality are explored in cultural mobility by referring to the locals in Shakespeare’s other plays. By tracing the trademark of Shakespeare’s authenticity, the intertextuality of Shakespeare’s Cardenio and Greenblatt and Mee’s adaptation are explored. Comparably, Shakespeare and Fletcher’s Cardenio focuses on the homoerotic male friendship echoing Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixode, while the Hakka Opera Betrayal emphasizes brotherhood, filial piety, loyalty, and heterosexual love.
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationTransnational Performance, Identity and Mobility in Asia
EditorsIris H. Tuan, Ivy I-Chu Chang
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan, Springer Nature
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)978-981-10-7106-5
StatePublished - 28 Apr 2018


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