TAIPEI, July 28 (Xinhua) -- The Cloud Gate, Taiwan's first modern dance group, staged an outdoor performance for the public on Saturday evening in downtown Taipei, attracting around 40,000 audience members who sat on the ground in a public square.
The performance, an annual July event since 1996 with support from Cathay Financial Holdings, is the 24th of its kind and the 2,432nd of all the performances staged by the group. It is also the final outdoor public performance to be headed by group founder and choreographer Lin Hwai-min before he retires as the group's artistic director at the end of the year.
Dancers presented selected works of Lin at the show with rich and expressive body language, with their inclusion of Chinese martial arts-style moves winning wide applause. Lin also arranged for other performers who are about to leave the group to perform their signature dances as a tribute to their contributions over the years.
In his speech delivered before the show began, Lin said he has been working hard to choreograph dances that can hold the audience's gaze, because otherwise they tend to move around during outdoor performances.
"You could say that my choreography has been formed by outdoor performance audiences," he said.
The Cloud Gate group was founded by Lin in 1973, the first of its kind in Taiwan. Cloud Gate dancers are trained in meditation, martial arts, modern dance, ballet and more, according to the group.
The group has won a number of international prizes and it tours extensively around the world.