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The Embroidery Girl
Chinese Original Dance Drama

About the Embroidery Girl

The story of the dance The Embroidery Girl took place during the transition period from the Qing Dynasty to the Republic of China. It tells the Legendary story of a talented girl from South China, Xiu Niang, who loved the art of embroidery and later became an embroidery master. Through her pursuit of embroidery and her tragic romance with her lover(Ming Xuan),the dance drama illustrates a Chinese woman’s struggles and her fight for the liberty to live and love freely.

The art of embroidery is the art of Xiu Niang’s life, and her life is threaded in her embroidery art. Xiu Niang devoted her short but beautiful life to embroidery art and left the embroidery art bible for the future generations. The Embroidery Girl reveals to the audience Xiu Niang’s story in the scrolls of stunning dances on stages.

 

Chinese National Award-Winning Dance Drama

 

Performed by China Wuxi Performing Arts Group, Song and Dance Institute

Executive Producer: Zhao Min

Playwright and Choreographer: Wang Xing

Composer: Zou Hang

Stage Art Designer: Zhang Jiwen

Costume Designer: Li Ruiding

 

About the Embroidery Girl

The story of the dance The Embroidery Girl took place during the transition period from the Qing Dynasty to the Republic of China. It tells the Legendary story of a talented girl from South China, Xiu Niang, who loved the art of embroidery and later became an embroidery master. Through her pursuit of embroidery and her tragic romance with her lover(Ming Xuan),the dance drama illustrates a Chinese woman’s struggles and her fight for the liberty to live and love freely.

The art of embroidery is the art of Xiu Niang’s life, and her life is threaded in her embroidery art. Xiu Niang devoted her short but beautiful life to embroidery art and left the embroidery art bible for the future generations. The Embroidery Girl reveals to the audience Xiu Niang’s story in the scrolls of stunning dances on stages.

 

Synopsis

Prologue

Xiu Niang , Floating to the heaven from the arms of her loved one.

Xiu Pu (Embroidery art bible), is the swan song of her talents and tragic life.

 

First Half

Act One

Museum, exhibiting the handed-down exquisite embroidery art works.

Wen Xiu, a modern embroidery girl, is embroidering bird figures with a group of girls. The bird figures are magically rising from embroidery sheet. Wen Xiu turns into a bird, flying out of the embroidery studio, back into time and space where she follows the footprints of Xiu Niang, the embroidery master and her extraordinary embroidery life.

 

Act two

Xiu Niang was thrown into an arranged marriage with no love.

Hua Jue, Xiu Niang's husband, is marrying again, taking a second wife. Xiu Niang is devastated by the news. She turned her anger and sadness to her embroidery art. With no love and affection from her husband, she feels distant, full of disdain and hate.

 

Act three

On stage, the modern embroidery girl, Wen Xiu, is walking with the soul of Xiu Niang from one hundred years ago, witnessing the trajectory of her life, scene after scene.

Xiu Niang walking on the arched bridge, she is so sad with worries, but her charm and beauty catches the eyes of Ming Xuan, a street painter. At Hua Jue's house, they meet again.

Ming Xuan’s paintings inspired Xiu Niang in her embroidery works. Together, they create one exquisite piece of embroidery after another. However, Hua Jue sells them for money in a blink of eye. Xiu Niang and Ming Xuan are deeply hurt. Their hearts and souls are connected with embroidery arts and the love of each other.

Xiu Niang struggle with the pains from the love that is forbidden so she turns her passion and energy into the needle and thread of the embroidery.  

 

Second Half

Act four

South of the Yangtze River, on the very same arched bridge that Xiu Niang and Ming XIu met the first time, Xiu Niang is desperate and hopeless from the pressures of a feudal family and society. She attempts to end her life in the river.

 

Act Five

Ming Xuan saves Xiu Niang. His true love and a western goddedd figure he painted spark the freedom in Xiu Niang’s heart, like the rebirth of Nirvana. The goddess reflects the beautiful mind of Xiu Niang, full of creativity, imagination, and perseverance.

Embroidery exhausted Xiu Niang’s mind and body. When she set her lifetime companion bird free, she also set her spirit free.

As time went on Xiu Niang lost her eyesight, but she dreamed of flying together with Ming Xuan. In the end , she passed away peacefully in her beloved Ming Xuan’s arms.

 

Finale

White clouds floating into the sky, so pure, just like Xiu Niang’s heart. Birds flying across the clouds, disclosing the beautiful embroidery works created by Xiu Niang . Seen through Xiu Niang’s extraordinary life, Wen Xiu embraces her master’s embroidery art works with respect.

14 - 15 February 2014