CANBERRA, Australia—Nathan Spinaze, a public servant in the Department of Defence, found the variety in the Divine Performing Arts Chinese Spectacular "really quite incredible".
"I didn't really know what to expect. It's such a range and a depth in there, in their dancing and their singing in an opera style … I think that's a variety of different dancing styles and costumes. It's really quite incredible," he said.
"I'm really enjoying … I guess the articulation of the Chinese culture, plus being able to sort of translate that into the Australian vernacular as I go along to understand what's going on. I am finding it very, very interesting," Mr Spinaze explained. He was referring particularly to the male and female comperes for the show, who both gave bilingual introductions and commentary before each act.
Mr Spinaze spoke of the "pride" he felt the Divine Performing Arts company expressed for their heritage through the performance. "With their sense of continuing culture over the last few thousand years, they've taken a real pride in that; I find that really quite interesting.
"I mean, Australia has only been around for like a hundred and something years. You know for a Western sort of civilisation … it's hard to comprehend their own sort of pride in that sort of cultural continuity," he said.
Mr Spinaze was also intrigued with the lyrics of the solo vocal performances. "I found some of the lyrics of the opera style singing very, very interesting and they were talking about things like truth and love and the concept of distinction between good and evil … that was certainly universal … done in a very Chinese sort of way."
As to selecting a favourite act from the show, Mr Spinaze spoke of the drum performances and the 'Mongolian Bowl Dance'. "We've just finished [seeing] a bit of a drumming — I don't know what you would call it, an extravaganza or something — which I really enjoyed. And several scenes before that … a whole pile of female dances with pots or bowls on their heads ['Mongolian Bowl Dance'] which was really just incredible. I don't know how they do it."
Mr Spinaze's wife also attended the show and commented: "I think the best thing for me is just watching the beauty, feasting eyes on beauty; it's so refreshing to the soul."
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