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Putting on their peak performance

By Chen Nan | China Daily | Updated: 2024-05-17 06:47

Yu Zixuan, a student of the Beijing Dance Academy, performs during the 13th Taoli Cup National Dancing Education Performance of China. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Dance standouts from the Taoli Cup to go on national 11-city tour, Chen Nan reports.

As the Beijing Dance Academy celebrates its 70th anniversary this year, the established dance school has announced the first nationwide tour of a selection of standout entries from the 13th edition of the Taoli Cup National Dancing Education Performance of China. The national event, initiated by the academy in 1985, has been held every three years and is a platform for training top young dancers and was originally known as the Taoli Cup National Dancing Competition.

The 13th Taoli Cup was held in Beijing last August and featured 200 programs divided into six sections according to style, including classical Chinese dance, Chinese folk dance, ballet and contemporary dance. Students representing 64 schools from 27 cities and provinces participated, making it the largest event in the cup's history. For the first time, the competition featured contemporary dance, a relatively new style in China compared to traditional Chinese dance and Chinese folk dance, and which still caters to a minority taste.

According to Xu Rui, president of the Beijing Dance Academy, 15 performances will be held in 11 cities, including Beijing, Chongqing, Suzhou in Jiangsu province, and Kunming in Yunnan province, between May and November.

Students from over 10 art schools who participated in the 13th Taoli Cup, including those from the Beijing Dance Academy, the Central Academy of Drama, the Nanjing University of the Arts and Hangzhou Normal University, will take part in the tour.

It will feature four major styles: classic Chinese dance, ballet, Chinese folk dance and contemporary dance. Before each performance, the winners of major awards in previous editions, among them star dancers like Wang Yabin, Hua Xiaoyi and Wang Zihan, will introduce the history of the Taoli Cup and the pieces to be staged.

"For nearly 40 years, the competition has been a key platform for young dancers to show their skill and be seen by a wider audience. Many young Chinese dancers shot to stardom after winning the competition, and have become top dancer-choreographers today. They have taken leading roles in dance productions in theaters, and have created their own work, promoting the development of the dance scene in China by growing a large fan base for the art, especially among the young," says Xu.

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