‘Ovations’ offers Chinese dancing

Gary Linehan, The Union Democrat

Daylight saving time begins early Sunday, but don't let that make you late for an exotic and enchanting dance performance by the San Francisco-based Lily Cai Chinese Dance Company. The dance performance begins at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Dr. Elliott Smart Performing Arts Center at Bret Harte High School at 323 Highway 49 in Angels Camp.

This will be part of the "Ovations" performing arts series sponsored by the Calaveras County Arts Council.

The dancers will be uninterrupted by an intermission so that viewers can experience a full-length venture into an art form depicting centuries of history adorned with colorful traditional costumes, swirls of ribbon and light.

Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for youths 18 years and younger. For tickets, go online to www.calaverasarts.org or call 754-1774.

"Elegant, cultural and captivating, the Lily Cai Chinese Dance Company melds ancient Chinese forms with modern dance in an artistic and inventive marriage of styles," said Mary Jane Genochio, the arts council's executive director. "The company bridges the continuum from past to contemporary - from spectacular court dances of Chinese dynasties to contemporary works fusing classical Chinese movement, modern dance, and ballet, complemented by dazzling costumes, original music, and innovative staging."

Lily Cai, the company's artistic director and choreographer, said that when the dancers are on stage, they want the audience to feel the performance.

"I want people to see the beauty, feel the beauty, and see that it's unique," she said.

Drawing inspiration from her Chinese heritage and career as a principal dancer at the Shanghai Opera House, Lily Cai is known internationally for her vivid choreography and style.

The final performance in the 2014 "Ovations" series will take place Sunday, March 30, with cowboy entertainer Dave Stamey. He is a real cowboy, leading trail rides from Mono Lake to Bodie, and a troubadour, singing his way all over the West.

The Calaveras County Arts Council also operates Gallery Calaveras at 22 Main St. in San Andreas. Hours are 9 a.m.to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m.to 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

The upcoming high school art show, "ArtSpirit," opens Saturday, March 15, with a reception from 1 to 3 p.m. "ArtSpirit" runs through Saturday, April 19. Arts council members receive a 10 percent discount on all gallery purchases, except during "ArtSpirit."

For more information, call 754-1774 or visit calaverasarts.org.

The Union Democrat
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