NTD Classical Chinese Dance Contestant: History and Culture ‘From Heaven’


The 10th NTD International Classical Chinese Dance Competition kicked off Thursday at Purchase College in New York, with the junior division competing in dance stories and a combination of technical movements. Contestants shared their experiences and what brought them to the competition.

Taiwan’s Yunshi Liu portrayed Yang Yuhuan, one of the four beauties of ancient China, from a maiden to a woman, to becoming a noble consort.

“I wanted to present the best and most positive aspect to the audience so I decided to show the pinnacle stages of her life,” she told NTD. “I performed this part because I understood that this historical figure and such culture came from Heaven to the people. This idea has been passed down to the present day so that people can learn from the past.”

Yutzu Tsai, who is also from Taiwan, presented “Dance of the Courtyard,” depicting the shyness and reserve of ancient girls.

“Starting from exiting the door, girls in ancient times had a high threshold to step through,” she said. “They wouldn’t lose their posture when playing, like a dignified lady, very elegant.”

Grace Rubacek is from Fei Tian Academy of the Arts. With the performance “Spring,” she entered the contest for the second time. Though a westerner, she is dedicated to promoting traditional Chinese culture.

“Today’s China has lost a lot of its traditional culture, because of the Chinese [cultural] revolution, and a lot of it can’t be found anymore. So I think [that] by showing the values and virtues of classical Chinese dance and the history of China is very meaningful and important.”

Eleven contestants braved the long journey from Taiwan to New York for the competition. They shared the experience of progressing together.

Yu-Wei Ma, who participated in junior male division, said: “It’s all about working together and promoting Classical Chinese Dance together. There is no difference between us. I can’t have that kind of ego anymore, that way I can really dedicate myself to the dance.”


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