About Susan

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Farewell to 2007

My last artistic performance this year was another tough classical number, but thankfully the acting was as important as the technical demands so I tried my best to portray a doomed heroine bidding her King a last farewell. The story is from the revered Chinese opera "Farewell My Concubine" and is a tale/legend well known to many Chinese.

The English description on the program was as thus: "Outside the tent, Chu native songs blare in the night/Enemy surrounds encampment on all sides/Farewell, my lord; I depart to lessen your burden/May you regroup soon to fight for your kingdom." Of course, the ill-fated King is doomed. I'd think that after your one true love has killed herself you'd lose your own will to live, much less try to fight your way out of a terrible situation. I'm well aware that many stories in history tell similar tales. The devotion is admirable, but it doesn't make me feel any better! I cried the first 10 times I watched the original dance tape and I only hope I was able to move at least one audience member.

By the way, the sword I used is a Wushu competition sword, meaning it is meant for martial arts and much heavier than a theater sword. It is weighted very nicely, but I actually cut myself on it a few times and had somewhat unfounded fears that my right arm would gain more mass due to constant practice (sword technique was much more challenging than I'd imagined, surprise). Thank goodness I never nicked my neck during the final scene in rehearsal or performance. And without further ado, here's to more dancing in 2008!
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