Making the Yang Drama Mask

Yang Drama in Youyang is a kind of folk opera which combines sacrificial rites and opera art with a strong religious atmosphere. It is regarded as one of the core cultural geographic symbols of Youyang.


There are usually 7 to 32 sets of masks depending on performance needs. According to different roles, performers wear different kinds of masks. Various melodies and instruments are used during the performance. There are now 7 distinct types of Yang Drama in Youyang county, each with its own cultural and regional characteristics.


Masks for Yang Drama are unique and delicate. Few local residents still  know manufacturing skills handed down from their ancestors. They use cypress as the main material. After selecting the proper branch from the cypress tree, they cut it into two in the middle and  put it under the sun for about 2 months, then start to carve and paint it in order to make it delicate and charming.