This is the story of HSEU Fu-Neng, also known as the "Shadow of Shadow Plays."
Since childhood, Hseu has been fascinated by the traditional art of Shadow Plays. Whenever the village theatrical troupe performed, he would follow them around and volunteer his service to the artists and musicians. His sincerity finally moved his childhood sweetheart to persuade her father, a Shadow Play Master, to take Hseu on as an apprentice. With hard work and perseverance, he eventually became a master of Shadow Plays. But things did not end happily thereafter. During the "White Terror" period in the 1950s, when people were arrested or killed for actual or suspected anti-Kuomintang sentiments and behaviour, Hseu was implicated and sent to prison. Even before his incarceration, Hseu's life had already begun to undergo a change for the worse. Being on the run cost him the love of his life, incurred him a great deal of debt, and with the transition of lifestyle as time went by, the popularity of traditional operas including shadow plays, went into decline. It was not until the 1980s that traditional operas were again appreciated. Hseu's devotion to his beloved shadow play remained strong, and with his brothers, nephews and apprentices, formed the "Fu-Shing-Ge Shadow Play Theatre Group." This documentary film began with an introduction of folk musical art. It was two years in the making. By the time this film was completed, Hseu has become like an uncle to me.
Source: Taiwan International Documentary Festival
2000 Taiwna International Documentary Festival - Taiwan Focus: Landscape of Life
2000 Taiwna International Documentary Festival