Here for an Indian experience

Here for an Indian experience

On their second visit to India, the acrobatic artistes from our neighbouring country China were full of enthusiasm about their recent performance in the City to celebrate the Chinese New Year festival. Metrolife caught up with a few artistes from the 17-member group ‘Guangxi Acrobatic Troupe’ and came away enchanted by their zest and dazzled by their superlative act!

Sparing time in between the rehearsals at Shangri-La Hotel, Xie Weiyu, the design director of the troupe said, “We visited India in 2011 for a comprehensive performance with song and dance alongwith acrobatics, but I personally didn’t enjoy that trip,” making it imperative for Metrolife to inquire the reason. “It was a very tight schedule,” she says smilingly, while a representative from the Embassy of China translates for Metrolife. Xie, meanwhile, points to another member from the troupe and Metrolife is introduced to Cuiyan (a senior male member) who says, “I enjoyed that trip thoroughly!”

Almost all the members in the troupe are young and Xie informs, “They start learning acrobatics at a very young age to attain perfection in the art. A trainer has to be very serious during rehearsals for a great attention is required for their safety. Only skillful performances cannot satisfy audiences today, so we need to be more original and present a high-level performance.” Something that the troupe managed to achieve as the audiences applauded their efforts throughout their performance.

Even as Xie talks, young girls balance themselves on each other and attempt handstands on each other’s head and legs, leaving the viewer speechless. “The courage and support from their parents is a must, but the child needs to have a keen interest in acrobatics to be able to become an artiste,” adds Xie listing out the necessity of key abilities such as “patience and flexibility to achieve perfection in any act.”

When asked about the most ‘dangerous’ stunt that the troupe members perform, Xie replies, “There is no such word in the dictionary of an acrobatic artiste,” implying their strong conviction to excel in their chosen field. However, as a teacher she does feel the need to “double up as a mother since most of them are still quite young and remain in our presence for long hours. We also develop a friendship with our students but ultimately prefer remaining strict because that is good for them in the long run.”

Having watched videos of Indian acrobatics on internet, the troupe members didn’t sound much enthused but got excited at the thought of visiting the Taj Mahal post their performance. “Luckily, we have been given this chance this time. Last time when we came, it was raining heavily and we couldn’t visit the Lotus Temple as per our itinerary and wish that this desire too gets fulfilled this time round,” says Cuiyan informing that “The audience in China is as charged up and passionate as in India during our performance!” 

The troupe recently performed at the Siri Fort Auditorium.

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