'The Vision of Yoyo' returns for last round of performances

Ma Yue
The acclaimed production featuring amateur dancers aged from 8 to 66 will have a short finale at Shanghai International Dance Center.
Ma Yue

The Shanghai International Dance Center Theater's original production "The Vision of Yoyo" is returning to the center for its final performances this weekend about six months after its premiere.

The dance show was created through a project aimed at nurturing grassroots theatrical talent and involves a handful of amateur dancers ranging in age from 8 to 66.

It showcases the diversity and richness of ordinary people's lives, and some of the amateur dancers' personal stories are told in the performance.

"The Vision of Yoyo" first hit the stage in May after eight months of creation and refinement, during which the group overcame the unexpected deaths of two performers.

Programmer and tap dance student Pan Wenjia died in January from injuries sustained in a traffic accident while bulimia patient Du Juan died from a lung infection in March.

'The Vision of Yoyo' returns for last round of performances
Dong Tianye

"The Vision of Yoyo" aims to showcase the diversity and richness of ordinary people's lives.

These tragic losses strengthened the fortitude of the crew, as well as the production's connection with audiences who have been experiencing the complexity of life just like the dancers on stage.

After the successful Shanghai premiere, "The Vision of Yoyo" was invited to perform at theaters in Hangzhou and Beijing, though the latter show was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to the unusual range of dancers who come from different cities and have various work commitments, "The Vision of Yoyo" is doomed to be a short-term production.

It will stage its last three performances at the dance center from Friday to Sunday.

'The Vision of Yoyo' returns for last round of performances
Hu Yifan

"The Vision of Yoyo" is making a return to Shanghai International Dance Center this weekend.

The dance show has won promising feedback from a lot of professional dancers.

"The amateur dancers' movements might not be 'perfect,' but they are sincere, confident, brave and expressive," said Wang Jiajun, Shanghai Dance Theater's principal dancer, who watched the performance in Shanghai in May.

"The beauty of a dance is hardly rated by its degree of difficulty, but by the sincerity of the performers," he added. "The performers are willing to expose their private side, including weakness and painful memories, to audiences. Not all dancers are able to do that, because it requires the dancers' thorough trust in themselves and the audience."

Shanghai-based choreographer and dancer Xie Xin is impressed by "The Vision of Yoyo" director Song Xinxin's courage.

"To work together with amateur dancers, Song has to slowly get to know about them and feel their feelings. Not all creators have that kind of patience to fully understand a group of people and be devoted to the work," said Xie.

'The Vision of Yoyo' returns for last round of performances
Dong Tianye

The dance recruited a handful of amateur dancers.

Performance info:

Dates: November 12-13, 7:30pm; November 14, 2pm
Tickets: 100-280 yuan
Venue: Experimental Theater, Shanghai International Dance Center

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