Members of the Beijing Opera visited Missouri Military Academy last month for a cultural exchange with a group of academy cadets. The visit lasted an hour and included a performance centered around the history and traditions of the opera.

An interpreter explained different characters, and cadets were invited on stage to learn from the performers and acted out roles, such as riding a horse or pretending to be an old man with a long beard.

The experience was a beneficial cultural experience for the domestic and international cadets, said Director of the academy's Music Department Rob McGrath.

“It was good for our Chinese cadets to see an arts presentation from their country and to feel proud of their culture,” McGrath added in a news release. “For our other cadets, this was a great opportunity to learn about Chinese culture.”