The human mind is capable of creating unbelievable works of art.
Whether through paint, music, dance, or even speech. The creativity of humans never ceases to amaze us.
It is in the art of dance that most find entertaining to see. And who would have thought umbrellas could be so mesmerizing?
Such delicate poses
Say hello to the young ladies of Missouri State University. Influenced by Asian fusion, these girls selected an oriental theme using colorful Chinese umbrellas.
Dressed in black to bring out the variety of colors, they assemble by fours onstage and as the music starts playing, they begin unfurling their umbrellas in sequences according to the melody.
The slow opening and closing of colors make for an amazing sight.
Like blossoming flowers in the Spring
They begin an alternating sequence of opening and closing their umbrellas. Truly eye catching!
The dazzling display of colors bring the stage to life. The ladies begin twirling their colorful props as the ones on top start swaying their umbrellas. They proceed from top to bottom, echoing their teammates moves.
As they begin to stand and fan out, the umbrellas seem to grow in size at the same time as the group’s movements.
Traditional Chinese umbrellas can be traced beyond the Han dynasty
The music is a mix of oriental instruments and modern beats. The Asian strings twanging to a slow rhythm carried along by a hip hop beat makes for an interesting piece.
The dance transitions from a slow Asian step to a very light ballet. Basic steps and spins add to the effect of the umbrellas as the dancers in black use the full effect of the colors.
It’s simple but very creative. The audience seems captivated by what they’re seeing.
Colors in a nutshell
Chinese umbrellas are collapsible as they are believed to have been made with articulated joints for the chariot of an ancient Chinese Emperor named Wang Mang. A collapsible umbrella was excavated at the burial site of Wang Mang’s son, Wang Guang.
Carbon dating suggests this piece of history came all the way back from the 6th century BCE. They require great skill to make as each individual part requires perfect fit and assembly to create the finished product.
These are intricate works of art. They are very much a part of China’s culture and history.
The Emperor’s new groove perhaps
The performance is under two minutes long. Pretty short considering the many creative ways they used the umbrellas. The all black look worked well for the stage visuals as well. They fall in together forming a small ball, folding into each other while using the umbrellas as covers for their formation.
What’s life without colors?
The tempo slows as the ladies remain in their little ball. The umbrellas begin opening and closing once more perhaps signifying that all endings can be beautiful as well.
You can hear the whooping and cheering from the crowd as they approve of the performance. Nothing like a little fusion of history and modern. The patterns and drawings vary on each umbrella. From solid colors, to flowers, animals, landscapes, and so on, these umbrellas can be made and designed according to the owner’s taste.
Click on the video below and enjoy this wonderful dance.
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