Sunday, February 20, 2005

Movement in a silent world

Robina watched a re-run of the CCTV Chinese New Year Eve programme. She was actually channel hopping but was captivated by a dance item by the Chinese Handicapped Artistic Troupe: Thousand-armed Avalokiteshvara (Guan Yin).

Prior to this, the group had astounded international audience at the closing ceremony of the 2004 Athens Paralympics. Inspired by Buddhist art in the Dunhuang grotto, the dance item had impressed and moved the Chinese audience so much that it was voted by TV audience and netizens as the best performance for the evening. What was even more amazing was that the 21 dancers were deaf and dumb. It meant that they could not hear the music and it would be extremely challenging to co-ordinate the intricate timing and sequences. There were four instructors wearing white gloves at four corners of the stage to signal tempo and timing.

check out a Real Player clip of the 6-min performance.

check out the earlier performance in Athens.


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