“Dance drama “Peacock” performed in Jinan for four consecutive performances”
From November 17th to November 19th, dance artist Yang Liping performed 4 consecutive performances of the 2022 version of the dance drama “Peacock” at the Shandong Provincial Grand Theater in Jinan, bringing a beautiful dance art feast to the audience.
This version of the dance drama “Peacock” is a reinstalled and rebooted version, and the stage presentation is even more shocking. In an interview with reporters, Yang Liping said that images such as peacocks are symbolic things in our culture, and people have deeply integrated such beautiful images of peacocks in nature into their own aesthetics and memories.
“Peacock” is a classic stage image created by Yang Liping. As early as 1988, Yang Liping performed “Sparrow Spirit” on the Spring Festival Gala. Her ethereal dance amazed the audience and became a childhood memory for many people. Through many years of wonderful interpretations of “Peacock”, “Yang Liping is the peacock, and the peacock is Yang Liping” has been recognized by the audience. “Peacock” dances the nirvana of life and the ultimate oriental aesthetics on the stage, and is considered to be comparable to the classic “Swan” on the Western ballet stage.
Yang Liping explained that maybe people remember her because of the peacock dance, as if she can only dance the peacock dance. In fact, she has many works, such as “Two Trees”, “Fire”, “House of Flying Daggers”, etc. Talking about why peacock dance is loved by generations of audiences, Yang Liping said that this is because images such as peacocks, phoenixes, and dragons are symbolic things in our culture, and indeed represent an oriental aesthetic and culture. People have regarded nature as The beautiful image of the peacock has penetrated deeply into my aesthetics and memory.
After works such as “The Spirit of the Bird” became popular, Yang Liping wanted to tell a richer and more profound story about “Peacock”. Therefore, in 2012, there was a dance drama “Peacock”. Last year, the “2022 version of the dance drama “Peacock”” was reinstalled and restarted. After careful modifications and adjustments, it launched a nationwide tour in a brand-new stage format, and the “Peacock style” was once again popular in various places.
The dance drama “Peacock” is a visual and auditory feast. The four seasons of spring, summer, autumn and winter alternate on the stage, and various characters perform stories of soul collision; the music depicts all things in nature, and the audience can hear the sound of wind blowing and time created by ethnic musical instruments. The passing sound brings the audience into an ethereal mood. Yang Liping told reporters that the dance drama “Peacock” uses the image of a peacock to tell a story about nature, life, growth, humanity and love.
On the stage, Yang Liping appeared in the “Winter” chapter of “Peacock”. She no longer danced, but acted as a meditator who has settled in the heavy snow in winter, immersed in thinking and looking back on her life. She hopes that the audience can gain more insights from the play like she does: “The plot of our version of the dance drama is not simple and will resonate a lot with the audience.”
During the interview, Yang Liping kept talking about the inheritance of peacock dance and the training of new actors. Yang Liping appeared in a chapter in “Peacock”, leaving more stage opportunities to young people. The young people in the dance troupe commented that Yang Liping was like a mother. Yang Liping was full of praise for the group of talented “post-00s” young dancers assembled in the work: “They performed very complex roles and presented their bodies, muscles, and souls in the artistic conception of the work, completely burned, completely released.
Today, the 65-year-old Yang Liping is still insisting on creating. Works such as “Peacock” and “The Rite of Spring” have been innovating and leading aesthetics to some extent, which has also brought some controversy. For example, in June this year, a set of photos of male dancers in tights from the dance drama “Peacock” caused controversy. When asked what else she wanted to surpass and challenge in dance and dance drama, Yang Liping said that she didn’t think she wanted to challenge anything. “Why do we dance? Because we want to express our joy or sadness. There is no challenge or so-called transcendence. The important thing is to express what we feel.
Talking about future creations, Yang Liping said that recently the dance company has been doing a zodiac dance series, using short videos to present the dances of the zodiac signs of ox, tiger, rabbit and so on, hoping to show more traditional culture through dance. “Dance is a combination of traditional culture and very experimental.”