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60 dancing years

By Chen Nan | China Daily | Updated: 2019-09-26 08:47

Qiu Yunting (left) and Wu Sicong, dancers with the National Ballet of China, dancing the wedding pas de deux from Don Quixote.[Photo provided to China Daily]

The National Ballet of China will celebrate its legacy with a series of productions, Chen Nan reports.

The National Ballet of China, a leading dance company, will mark 60 years of its establishment this year with celebrations of the legacy of the country's first ballet troupe.

Highlights include 13 performances of the company's classic ballet productions, both adaptations of Western ballets and original Chinese pieces, including Swan Lake, Giselle, Red Detachment of Women and Raise the Red Lantern, as well as concerts by the company's symphony orchestra-all set to be staged from Nov 25 to Dec 30 in Beijing.

"The birth and growth of the National Ballet of China has been connected with the development of the country. The company has endured many challenges in its history and is a successful, confident and innovative company today," says Feng Ying, a former ballerina and current president of the National Ballet of China.

As the country's first institute of dance, the Beijing Dance School (now the Beijing Dance Academy) opened on Sept 6, 1954.

Dai Ailian, or Ailien Tai, then 38, an overseas Chinese ballerina, was appointed as the first president of the institute. Dai was born in a Chinese family in Trinidad and learned ballet in London. She returned to China in 1940. She became the first president of the National Ballet of China.

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