The dance-poem drama The Journey of a Legendary Landscape Painting is a “poetic drama” that comprises a number of parts including “Scroll Unfolding, Seal Script Asking, Silk Singing, Stone Search, Penmanship Practice, Ink Milling and Drawing”. The audience will follow a modern researcher from the Palace Museum, i.e., from the perspective of the scroll opener, to roam through the legendary traditional Chinese aesthetic charm.
The whole drama boasts a narrative structure constructed by the time-space crisscrossing technique. The story is set in the days when the Thousands Miles of Mountains and Rivers is about to be exhibited in reality, and the days when the teen painter WANG Ximeng was about to finish his drawing a thousand years ago. Having delved into the Picture of Vast Land, the opener walked into the heart of Ximeng and stayed with him when he drew the Thousands Miles of Mountains and Rivers in those precious days. Sharing the same feeling with this talented youngster, whose life experience is just recorded in a few words, the opener figured out the occasional and necessary causes why it could be peerless for about one thousand years, thereby understanding the emotional ties between treasured national cultural relics and modern people.
To be outlined on the stage is a thick-stratified picturesque scene: A bright moon has shone for a thousand years, with the opener and Ximeng staring at each other; with assiduity, the cultural workers of the Palace Museum have worked with the industrious ancient craftsmen in creating a vivid humanistic picture scroll.
About the poetic drama art
The poetic drama shares the same origin with literature. Nine Songs, which came out in the pre-QIN period of China, can be considered the earliest form of poetic drama. The Yuan Opera can also be regarded as a readable and performable poetic drama. The poetic drama not only contains strong poetic sentiments, but also has dramatic storylines and scenes.
Unless it is requested to use the prose form on the stage, all lines must be verses in order to emphasize the poetry and strong lyricism to provide the reader with a broad space for artistic reconstruction.
Chief Planners / Executive Presenters: JING Xiaoyong, DU Haijiang, YE Zhenzhen
Chief Producers: GAO Ai, REN Wanping, WANG Yuegong, TANG Weihong
Supervisors: SHI Ziwen, LIU Peng, SHEN Chen, ZHANG Lei, PAN Jian, QIU Wei
Art Adviser: FENG Shuangbai (Chairman of the China Dancers Association, and doctoral supervisor)
Aesthetic Advisor: ZHANG Xiaoling (Member of the Council of the China National Academy of Painting, Dean of the College of Fine Arts, East China Normal University, and doctoral supervisor)
Cultural Advisor: ZENG Jun (Director of the Department of Painting and Calligraphy, The Palace Museum)
Cultural Advisor: YU Ziyong (Director of the Department of Heritage Conservation Technology, The Palace Museum)
Cultural Advisor: WANG Zhongxu (Research fellow at the Department of Painting and Calligraphy, The Palace Museum)
Cultural Advisor: YU Wentao (Associate research at the Department of Painting and Calligraphy, The Palace Museum)
Music Advisor: CHENG Chi (Composer)
Chief Choreographers: ZHOU Liya, HAN Zhen
Script: XU Junrui
Composer: LYU Liang
Set Designer: GAO Guangjian
Lighting Designer: REN Dongsheng
Costume Designer: YANG Donglin
Hair Style Designer: JIA Lei
Executive Choreographers: LIU Cui, XIE Yuanzhen, LIU Xin
Guest Choreographers: HE Junbo, ZHANG Zhenguo
Multimedia Designer: ZHANG Song
Photographer: WANG Xufeng
Graphic Designer: LIU Xianlin
Calligrapher: YANG Tao
Intangible Cultural Heritage Advisors
QIU Qingnian (Representative inheritor of Chinese painting pigment manufacturing technique, a national intangible cultural heritage)
WANG Aijun (Representative inheritor of Huizhou inkstick manufacturing technique, a national intangible cultural heritage)
ZHANG Wennian (Representative inheritor of Xuan writing-brush manufacturing technique, a national intangible cultural heritage)
ZHENG Xiaohua (Representative inheritor of Shuanglin silk weaving technique, a provincial intangible cultural heritage)