In an elegant tulle dress, she backs on stage, hunched and creeping. The articulate movements of her arms and upper body are filled with tension, the occasional convulsion resounding through her body. Upstage, under a cold spotlight, stands a lady clothed in a burnt orange gown, her gaze sad and distant. A man enters and dances between these two women. Against the steadily pulsating music the slow, drawn out movements of the trio have a sorrowful air. Each dancer appears absorbed in their individual world, yet there is a sense that these characters are intrinsically connected—a story waiting to unfold.
Wu Husheng and Qi Bingxue in Shanghai Ballet's “Echoes of Eternity.” Photograph by Chen Wen