Movie theater advertising the film version of the model revolutionary opera “Red Lantern,” summer 1971

Visualizing Early 1970s China through the Lens of the Committee of Concerned Asian Scholars (CCAS) Friendship Delegations

Movie theater advertising the film version of the model revolutionary opera “Red Lantern,” summer 1971

Since 1967, eight model theatrical works (five operas, two ballets and a symphony) had dominated Chinese performance stages during the Cultural Revolution. A saying at that time described the scarcity of the allowed cultural performances: “Eight hundred million people watching eight shows.” The sign next to the Red Lantern poster says, “Celebrate the tenth anniversary of the signing of the Sino-North Korean Mutual Aid and Cooperation Friendship Treaty.” The sign on the wall reads, “Chinese People’s Friendly Delegation Visits North Korea.” Both refer to the diplomatic engagement of China with North Korea during the early 1970s.