Video Highlights from the San Francisco Opera Production


The San Francisco Opera has provided a series of highlight videos from the opera, which will be posted on this page.

The first video shows Baoyu singing to Daiyu, in act 1, scene 2.  The aria he is singing is a poem he is offering Daiyu in exchange for her teaching him how to play the qin.

Segment 1 of the Opera

These are the words to the aria Baoyu sings:

I found this flower
Planted by the wall.
This flower Whose leaves are wilting.
Sweet flower You make this
A beautiful place.
Let me sprinkle morning dew
Onto your soft petals.

This duet, sung by Baoyu and Daiyu in Act 1, scene 2, follows Baoyu’s aria in the last video.

In this aria they sing of how they wish to build a world built not on riches, but on music. The aria ends:

Segment 2 of the Opera

Together we sing
That beauty
Can transform the world.


At the end of the aria, we see Lady Wang, Baoyu’s mother, cross the stage. She has already decided that Baoyu should marry Baochai; and she is distressed by what she hears. Baoyu and Daiyu do not see her.

In this aria, Princess Jia, on a rare visit home to the Jia family, laments her position and expresses her anxiety about the future. The aria occurs near the end of Act 1.

The words that Princess Jia sings are:

No one understands
The weight that I carry
The burden of our survival
Falls on my shoulders.
I hang on to my position,
As on the ledge of a mountain,
By the tips of my fingers,
I fear, I cannot hold on.

In this aria, Baochai sings:

A woman’s only chance for happiness
Is to marry well.
But happiness should come from the heart.
As a dutiful daughter
Such matters
Are not for me to decide.


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Dream of the Red Chamber Copyright © by Ann Waltner is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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