LONDON—A group of colleagues who work for the company Diageo came to see the Divine Performing Arts Chinese Spectacular on the opening night.
Uttam Gupta and Tina Maslow, business analysts, and Tim Bergmeier, project manager, heard about the show through a poster and their workplace. Tina was particularly interested because she travelled to China last year.
Uttam thought it was a great show. "Great back drops, [and] I felt really calm while I was watching... For me what I connected with was the water fairies ['The Nymphs of the Sea'] dancing, and I found the lady in the moon amusing. It's just what I needed after a week at work."
Uttam liked the Chinese flavor of the program in particular. "All in all the erhu was really special. I can't really single out too many things, but it was beautiful. Erhu and the drums were the highlight." She said. "[I] Enjoyed just sitting there and letting it all sink in. I will tell my friends about this. During the first half I wasn't too inquisitive then I started to understand the story behind it."
Tim agreed with Uttam's sentiments about the erhu: "The erhu is now my favourite instrument. I loved it, I thought it was much more powerful than the violin. It really was calming, but [an] assertive sound. I will invite all my friends to this show next time."
He also shared his thoughts of the pieces in the show which depict contemporary struggles for human rights in China. "The guys that wore the black gowns, the ones which looked like the communists, they obviously played a part in there which was quite covert in the way that they came in then played a bit of a role then left again. I though they did that part very well and did not over enunciate that there is this strong scenario over there and just touched upon it."
Tina most liked the Nymphs of the Sea and the drum pieces. She also particularly enjoyed the ethnic dances. "I was surprised by the Mongolian & Tibetan costumes as they were very similar to the dresses worn in Switzerland. It's very inspirational and it makes me want to go there."
The show also taught her something about Chinese history, and sparked her interest in finding out more. "I really want to know what happened with the story of Yue Fei, the one in which the man was tattooed by his Mum. What I want to know now is what happened after the invasion from the North. Did they win or lose or did they have a new emperor? I will have to research Chinese history to find out."
"This show was not over the top," she said, comparing it to shows she had seen in China. "I have been to China and seen similar shows but they were over the top."
"I was very surprised about the part where in China they persecute people with religious belief. "
For information about upcoming Divine Performing Arts shows, please visit: www.DivinePerformingArts.org.