Achieving the Chinese dream brings opportunities rather than threats to the world, peace rather than turmoil, and progress rather than retrogression. Napoleon said that China is a sleeping lion, and when this sleeping lion wakes up, the world will tremble. The lion, China, has awakened, but it is a peaceful, relatable and civilised lion.
--President Xi Jinping in Paris on 27 March 2014 at the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between France and China
’Awakening Lion‘ is the first dance drama in China based on the non-heritage Guangdong lion. Set against the backdrop of the Opium War more than a hundred years ago, and with the Sanyuanli Anti-British Uprising as the climactic breaking point, the play begins with today's lion wielders looking back at their forefathers and retracing the dust of a hundred years ago, when the Sanyuanli Anti-British Uprising was the first victorious armed struggle against invasion by the Chinese people in modern Chinese history. This brings out the vision of a lion culture that lives on, a lion spirit that is passed down from generation to generation, and a Chinese culture that celebrates the long-standing dream of national rejuvenation.
Where there are Chinese, there are lions
As part of the traditional Chinese lion dance, the Southern Lion is known as the Waking Lion because it is a powerful and eye-catching form of folk culture that incorporates martial arts, dance and music. The lion is considered to be an auspicious object to ward off evil spirits and is always danced during festivals and major events. The lion is not only the embodiment of the spirit of the Chinese people's heritage, but also the image of a pioneering, united and unafraid nation; it also serves as a cultural bridge for the Chinese people, spreading far and wide, and where there are Chinese people, there are lions, becoming a cultural symbol of self-reflection and self-improvement for the proud and confident children of China.
The first glorious banner of the people's struggle against invasion
The First Opium War broke out in May 1840 when the warships of the Western powers blockaded the mouth of the Pearl River in Guangzhou, gradually reducing China to a semi-colonial and semi-feudal society.
In May 1841, after the capture of the forts in the northern part of Guangzhou, the sons and daughters of Southern Guangdong demonstrated the bloodthirstiness of the Chinese nation in the Sanyuanli struggle against the British in Guangzhou.
The struggle against the British at Sanyuanli was the first time in modern history that Chinese sons and daughters spontaneously fought against foreign colonial invasion, and demonstrated the courage of the Chinese people to fight against the Western powers in spite of violence.
The people of Southern Guangdong have a strong culture and a long tradition of lion dance. In the near vicinity, the sons of four villages, Ah Sing and Long Shao, are actively preparing to win the Lion King of Sanyuanli Village.
On the eve of the competition, Ah Sing and Long Shao fight for the first time in a teahouse, and Ah Sing narrowly wins. The two of them meet under the moon and share their love for each other. The two of them meet under the moon, and their feelings are mutual. The mother is determined to oppose her son's training in martial arts and lion training because of his past grudge.
On the day of the tournament, the invaders' artillery fire comes, the city of Guangzhou is broken and the home is in ruins. In the midst of a national tragedy, the two of them, with their past grudges dissolved, join hands to fight and beat the lion, and with the villagers of Sanyuanli, they vow to defend themselves against the foreign enemy.
The dance drama "Awakening the Lion" takes the lion as its god and many other non-traditional items in Southern Guangdong as elements of creation, taking its form and shaping its spirit to fully realise the "creative transformation and innovative inheritance" of outstanding local traditional culture.
In terms of artistic style, the play takes the profound Lingnan culture as the carrier, showing the strong Lingnan characteristics and Guangzhou features; in terms of choreography, it takes the aesthetic vision of modern people as the starting point, incorporates more innovative elements, tries to use multimedia technology as the performance, integrates the environment and performance, and creates a very modern sense of concept and visual impact of the stage vision; in terms of dance technique innovation, it tries to combine the folk dance and In terms of innovative dance techniques, the show attempts to fuse the two different art forms of folk dance and traditional lion dance, incorporating the difficult techniques of Nanquan horse stance and the unique Southern-style lion dance, such as tumbling, moving, dodging, pouncing, pirouetting and leaping, into the dance language, vividly expressing the image of the lion in the dance drama, while making the whole dance drama appear to be both rigid and flexible, full of strength and beauty, which is a bold and useful exploration in art.
About Guangzhou Opera and Dance Theatre
Guangzhou Song and Dance Theatre, formerly known as Guangzhou Song and Dance Troupe, was established in 1965 and was once hailed by Guangming Daily as "a bouquet of flowers in Yangcheng". It has always adhered to the development concept of "establishing the troupe with repertoire, building the troupe with talents and developing the troupe in the market", and has gathered many outstanding artistic talents and created a number of excellent works.
Representative works: the dance drama " Awakening Lion", "Xinghai - The Yellow River", the dance narrative poem "Once Upon a Time in Guangzhou", the musical "Star", "Miss Xiguan", "Messenger of Peace", the dance poem "Lingnan Walking", the small dance drama "Awakening"; the songs "Please Come to the End of the World" and "Brothers and Sisters Want to Reunite"; the dances "Yingge Wu", "Wai House - Woman" and "Accompaniment", etc. It has won the National "Five One Project" Award, the "Wenhua Award" of the China Arts Festival, the First Prize of the National Dance Opera Musical Outstanding Play Exhibition, the "China Drama Award - Outstanding Play" of the China Drama Festival, and the "China Dance" Award. "Award, China Dance "Lotus Award" Dance Drama Award, Guangdong Province "Five One Project" Award, Guangdong Province "Lu Xun Literature and Art Award", Lingnan Dance It has received wide attention and praise from all walks of life.
In recent years, the company has been promoting the development of professionalism, branding and diversification, planning and organising a series of large-scale international thematic events, undertaking important domestic and international cultural exchange performances in Guangzhou, and making positive efforts and contributions in the artistic practice of promoting the excellent Chinese traditional culture, inheriting and developing Lingnan culture, and promoting and spreading Guangzhou culture.
19:30 June 8, 2023
19:30 June 9, 2023
Venue: Poly Shanghai City Theatre (No. 4889, Metropolitan Road, Minhang District)
Pick up info: Pick up from ticket office with 247+Your name+Your Phone number
Ticket price: 180/280/380/480/680
Duration: 120 mins (includes a 15-minute interval)