Mo Yan and Flight in Reverse: Chthonic Legend in Red Sorghum


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(preamble): Why Red Sorghum – again. I have recently rewritten the frontispiece for this website: it now focuses on the metatrope of flight. Physical flight upward, seemingly without point of return or safety armature. Something I first noticed in reviewing … Continue reading

Masculine costume in “Doudou”‘s Modern Dance: From terracotta warrior to onnagata


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(1) The Qin Warrior comes back to life after 2200 years…. **** Gloomy prognosis aside a new formula for male SOLO dance did however emerge in the later 1990s. As one might expect it was centered in (around) gymnastic agility … Continue reading

“Losing Breath/Losing Voice” – Women’s Dying in Gen. 5 Film


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Pagetop collage: teenage girl pulled from well nr Tianjin fall 2012 (attemped suicide); Cuiqiao’s father predicting her death by drowning; Raise High: “Coral” singing her operatic swansong as she faces death-by-enchainment in the rooftop jail on the Chen mansion: Shanghai … Continue reading

Referencing or Reproducing? Dancing about South Asia..


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The New World of World Dance in China: Dadawa in India, 2006 Once upon a time, in the early 1960s, there was in China a officialized version of what might be called “3rd world” (Bandung bloc defined) dance cadre, anchored … Continue reading

South of Tibet: Dadawa, Angel-voices, and Prof. He in Hindi-land


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Beyond Tibet: a Re-Partnering beyond the Himalayas Mix from He Xuntian album, 2008, Rulai ruqu, Taiwan) … and I had thought it (“Chinese” world music, hopes for cross-border fusion) had ended with Yangjinma (1996-7), the last child born of the … Continue reading

Celestial Journey to Tibet, New Age Modern Dance, Yang Liping and Choreo-fusion

Yang Liping: who?

How to begin? Another crossing of boundaries, literal and generic. But now via dance.
A dancer who, it needs to be added, has become the queen of New Age Primality, who THE REGIME obviously feels as a challenge (she has since 1980 received not one fen from any government or party source).

But the name of the dancer will mean nothing (much) in the Anglophone world, precious little to those modern dance savants who regard ethnically tattooed, legend-narrative modern dance as, well, B-class. Not compact or etched as it should be.

Well, let’s start again from “over there”. The views of the anonymous e-site commentors.

(Yes, I am a snoop – but aren’t blogbroadcasts aimed at such? Confessions putatively to and for oneself, but of course meant to be inspected by unknown readers. (Fictive privacy: the post-author’s coded “signature” – coyly approaching, but safe from rebuke). The roman épistolaire in electronic update. )


Earlier this year someone calling herself “jiaanda” mailed a comment to Oumuyounuo:
“I’ve been away from our hills for almost 16 years, and have now settled into family life near Guangzhou. But whenever I get a chance, I listen to your songvoice. It recalls the Torch Festival, my childhood memories, my many cousins and siblings long out of touch… your voice is so intimate… I truly do hope that one day you can become our Yunnan’s next Yang Liping!”


A Shaman’s Tale: Oumuyounuo vs. Official TV Culture


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Illustration: Ye Qianyu, Reunion of all the (minority) nations, 1953, watercolor: Mao and Zhou Enlai are the invited guests. Around them are 41 figures each dressed in different minority garb, all lifting libation cups in salute of the birth of … Continue reading

II: Tashi Tsering’s ethnic improcafé, Shangrila, Yunnan


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Illustrations: lower left, clockwise (1) Dadawa visits in Deqen (Tibetan AD, Yunnan) (2) Tashi Tsereng’s “Alice’s restaurant” mini-cafe (underground fuison) (3) Tibetan totemic ‘Damaru’ or shengu (spirit drum) improv (4) Performance for bar audience by Tashi and friends (5) Center: … Continue reading

A “Folk” Fusion Sound and New Age Vocal Timbre


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Illustrations: New Age and Bocellic Angelism (1) Dadawa (Yangjinma album), 1997: (2) Charlotte Church, Panis Angelicus (3) Enya, “Angeles”, ca. 1990 NEW AGE music surfaced in China almost independently (arguably in 1992), was “global” even before it was domestically popular … Continue reading

Yangge waist-drum dances for Yenan peasant recruits


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  The waist-drum or yaogu 腰鼓 dance was a high point in the celebration of the Chinese New Year in the north of Shaanxi province, where Chinese Communists located their WWII wartime government. It was performed only by unmarried male … Continue reading