NEW YORK, March 22 (Xinhua) -- Some 2,000 New Yorkers gave an enthusiastic standing ovation to Princess Zhaojun, a Chinese dance drama, at the David H. Koch Theater of Lincoln Center on Thursday night, on the story based on a page taken from ancient Chinese history.
The drama, on its first U.S. tour which began in Boston, Massachusetts, tells the story of Wang Zhaojun, a concubine living over 2,000 years ago during China's Han Dynasty, who gave up her comfortable palace life and chose to marry the monarch of Xiongnu, a powerful, belligerent nomadic tribal group located at the Han Empire's northern territory near today's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in China. Due to her efforts, peace was secured while cultural and economic exchange was promoted between the two once-hostile nations.
The 100-minute show drew a thunderous applause from the audience, who were duly impressed by its outstanding choreography, the dancers' excellent skills, and most importantly, were touched by the courage and tenacity of the heroine, Princess Zhaojun.
Diane Ross, one of the spectators and a local retiree, told Xinhua that she saw the power of a resilient woman through the character of Zhaojun, as well as the importance of communications between different nations and cultures.
"She (Zhaojun) acted like a peace envoy. I'm really happy to know the story of a strong Chinese woman who really existed in history," said Ross, adding that she understood the plot of the drama with the help of two large screens set up on both sides of the stage to feed key background information.
Presented by China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd. (CAEG) and performed by the China National Opera and Dance Drama Theater, Princess Zhaojun began its world premier in 2016 and has since toured China. In 2017, it was staged in Mexico as the closing performance for the Year of Chinese Culture and won wide acclaim.
The drama is part of CAEG's Image China cultural exchange initiative, which seeks to introduce traditional and contemporary Chinese performing arts to audiences around the world.
Following two successful shows in Boston earlier this month, Princess Zhaojun will run daily at the Lincoln Center through March 24.