Ancient and modern
   
 
Dragon tickets

At first, Danxian was popular among members of the imperial clan, who would perform it in the court or mansions of nobles and senior officials. They received ‘dragon tickets’ from the emperor, which they could cash into money and provisions. Never troubled by want, they performed for free. In the late Qing Dynasty and early Republican Period, with the living standards of imperial clan members declining sharply, they started to occasionally make money with such performances.