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Chinese State Circus hits new highs at Hippodrome

PUBLISHED: 11:57 30 December 2010

FROM the land of legends and Shaolin Warriors comes the incredible new Chinese State Circus production, the live action spectacular, Mulan.

As part of the 21-date theatre tour The Chinese State Circus arrives at Great Yarmouth Hippodrome on Friday and Saturday, March 4 and 5.

Mulan is based on the legend of one of China’s greatest heroines. Although the tales have spread over the world in poems, songs, books and films, this is their first incarnation in the all-action world of international circus.

It is the story of a strong-minded country girl who joined the Emperor’s all-male army in place of her father who was too old to fight. Through her warrior skills she was promoted to the rank of general; yet, throughout her epic exploits defeating all her enemies, no-one was aware that she was a woman.

The show is billed as the fusion of precision acrobatics, Shaolin martial arts, dazzling circus skills, colourful characters from Peking Opera, physical theatre and drama choreographed to an original music score.

It is said to provide entertainment for all the family, from the world’s leading Chinese acrobats, gravity-defying gymnastics, the seemingly impossible body manipulations of the hand-balancer, the leaping, rolling somersaulting repertoire of the hoop divers, to the lavish tradition of the Lion Dance.

The lightning reactions of the greatest exponents of martial arts, the Shaolin Wushu Warriors, trained at the Shaolin Temple, are said to stretch the limits of human achievement in this dazzling new production.

Philip Gandey, artistic director of The Chinese State Circus, said: “This is circus as you have never seen it! Thirty world-class artists perform in the best tradition of the Chinese State Circus.”

The title role of Mulan is performed by martial arts expert Liu Ye who is making her first appearance in the UK.

Her 15 years of Kung Fu training are showcased in a dramatic fight sequence in which she encounters a giant warrior.

Liu Ye started learning martial arts when she was only six years old, and has won three championship titles.

Joining Mulan are two of the most colourful characters in Chinese folklore, from Peking Opera, the Monkey King and his zany companion, Pig, who are the audience’s guides through the adventure.


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