-- New Ballet Fuses Two Divergent Tales Into a Dynamic Depiction of
China’s Emergence Into the Modern World --
FLUSHING, N.Y., May 3, 2011—The Beijing Dance Academy will perform excerpts from the U.S. premiere of a ballet, A Scent of Time, choreographed by leading contemporary performance artist and Queens College faculty member Yin Mei. The post-modern ballet, to be performed on Saturday, May 7 at 7:30 pm at Queens College’s LeFrak Concert Hall, fuses two powerful, yet divergent tales into a dynamic work depicting China’s tortuous transition into the modern world.
Yin Mei’s choreography has been hailed by the New York Times as “theatrical magic,” and by the Village Voice as inhabiting “the tremulous space where dramas and memories reside.” Yin Mei herself has been described as a “dancer of exquisite lyricism and delicacy” (New York Times) and a “stunning presence” (Dance Insider).
A Scent of Time was inspired by two parallel stories drawn from the history of China’s early modernization. In non-linear flashback style, the work re-imagines the experiences of two important Chinese figures: Zhang Chonghe, who dedicated her life to bringing an appreciation of Chinese calligraphy and Kunqu Opera to the U.S., and Shen Congwen, author of Border Town, one of the great Chinese novels of the 20th century.
The Beijing Dance Academy, one of the world’s leading institutions of dance and dance education, will also perform a selection of traditional and modern Chinese dances from its repertoire. In addition, the program includes several Chinese classical, folk and modern dances, the “Pas de Deux” from the ballet Sleeping Beauty and a dance solo.
Students in the Queens College dance program taught by Yin Mei will also participate in the evening’s performance.
About Yin Mei: As a director, choreographer and performance/visual artist, Yin Mei is known for producing category-defying works that bridge geographic, technological, artistic and cultural divides to create a unique brand of contemporary dance theater. Her choreography has been presented at leading national and international dance venues, and she has collaborated with an array of important visual artists, composers and performers.
In 2005 she received a Guggenheim fellowship for choreography. She now choreographs and performs her contemporary work worldwide through her company, Yin Mei Dance.
Yin Mei is also a dance professor and director of the dance program at Queens College, where she has twice received the college’s Presidential Research Award for her choreography and four times received a QC Innovative Teaching Award for developing original course offerings. From June 6-24, Yin Mei will direct the college’s Cross-Cultural Summer Dance Intensive Festival.
About the Beijing Dance Academy: Founded in 1954, the school currently enrolls 2,500 students. It has been called “the cradle for dancers,” having nurtured many dancers, teachers, choreographers and dance theory researchers around the world. Since 1979, its students have won over 50 medals at major international ballet competitions.
Call 718-793-8080 to reserve your free seats to this special dance event. If the Box Office is closed when you phone, you may leave a message with your name and the number of tickets that you wish to reserve.
This performance is the culminating event in the college’s full season of events marking the Year of China. For additional information: http://www.qc.cuny.edu/yearofchina.
For directions to the campus, go to: http://qc.cuny.edu/?id=9KTF