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Colby-Sawyer Hosts 'China's Daughter of Dance' Yu Wei

NEW LONDON, N.H. - Colby-Sawyer College will host a performance by Chinese choreographer and dancer Yu Wei, whose collection of dances is inspired by the synergy between dance, poetry, and music that flourished in the Tang dynasty more than 1,200 years ago.

The dance performance will take place on Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2008, at 7 p.m. in the Sawyer Center Theatre. Tickets may be purchased at the door or reserved through the Colby-Sawyer Box Office by calling (603) 526-3670. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and children.

Wei will present several different four- to nine-minute dances inspired by nature, Chinese classical literature and history, and folk legend. Wei's original choreography is drawn from styles such as Chinese classical, folk, ballet and modern dance.

Each dance is accompanied by a short film that highlights the dance's cultural and artistic background and behind-the-scenes snapshots of the dance's creation. The films also convey a sense of Chinese history and culture, and the story of Yu Wei's journey as a young girl during China's Cultural Revolution and her later recognition and success in America.

The music of Wei's dance collection is as varied as the dances themselves and includes the music of Chinese composers such as Chen-gang, He Zhan-hao, and Teng Geri, as well as Western composers Richard Wagner, Johann Strauss, Pachelbel and Vangelis.

When Wei was a young girl, the Wuhan Song and Dance Theater Academy selected her to study dance with some of the most widely recognized instructors in China. After graduating, Wei joined the dance company at the Wuhan Song and Dance Theater, where she continued her study of Chinese folk dance, modern dance and Peking Opera, and in 1986, she became the company's principal dancer. In 1992, Wei moved to Beijing to work with nationally renowned dance master Zhang Ke and to choreograph her own collection of solo dances.

Her collection of dances has been performed in Beijing, Guangzhou, Xian, Wuhan, and many other cities in China. In February 2000, Wei moved to the United States and has since performed in several venues including the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

Colby-Sawyer, founded in 1837, is a comprehensive liberal arts college located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire. Students learn in small classes through a select array of programs that integrate the liberal arts and sciences with pre-professional experience. Visit us on the World Wide Web at

Colby-Sawyer College, 541 Main St., New London 03257