public forum
home forum magazine gallery links about faq courtesy
It is currently Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:49 pm

All times are UTC - 7 hours [ DST ]




Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 12 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2002 3:30 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
EVERYBODY WAS KUNG-FU FIGHTING
Ryan Parry in The Mirror (NZ) joins the Shaolin monks heading for London's West End


HE stands before me, a study of Zen-like concentration. With his shaven head and flimsy orange robe, he looks anything but menacing.

But suddenly, in a blur of motion, the Shaolin soldier monk leaps six feet into the air and strikes a devastating blow mere centimetres from my quivering throat.

Far too late, I tumble backwards and land in a heap, watching in fear as my attacker touches down with nimble grace.

This is my introduction to the hardest monks on the planet...

And it's a very public humiliation, a one-sided confrontation outside a plush New Zealand hotel, thousands of miles from the monks' temple in China's Henan province.

click for more

<small>[ 09-13-2002, 05:31: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2002 3:43 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
<img src="http://www.sadlerswells.com/peacock/autumn2002/images/side_shaolin.jpg" alt="" />

Here are the details of the Shaolin performances in London from the Peacock Theatre website:

http://www.sadlerswells.com/peacock/autumn2002/shaolin.asp


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 1:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Mighty monks perform at cutting edge
by Sarah Frater in The Evening Standard

"Under no circumstances should these kung-fu feats be attempted at home," warns the programme, and it's not kidding.

No one should turn themselves into a sword-and-spike sandwich, where you lie on a rack of swords, place a bed of nails on your tummy, and then have a man smash the slab of concrete balanced on top. Neither should you rush at spears nor break iron bars on your head (although a metallurgist once told me that some metals are as brittle as biscuits).

Spear rushing is for "skilled experts" like the Shaolins, who can do all this, as well as tumble and fight, and still retain their beautiful, Buddhalike smiles.

Dubbed a "Kung-fu spectacular", Wheel of Life is a jaw-dropping display of the martial art performed by 20 or so Chinese soldier monks. The piece is ostensibly the story of the monks, but it's really just an excuse to show off their kung-fu skills.

click for more


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 1:20 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 07, 2002 11:01 pm
Posts: 178
if seen them perform feats that were contrary to laws of physics and nature, such as head springs (no handed-handsprings off their heads) there are simply amazing

_________________
http://www.dogsonacid.com/attachment.php?s=&postid=903460


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 4:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 3000
Location: San Francisco
I think I once did something inadvertently that could be called a headspring...


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 6:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Oct 22, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 17498
Location: SF Bay Area
Ouch.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 7:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 3000
Location: San Francisco
...except that it didn't spring.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Sun Sep 22, 2002 3:42 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 3129
Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Review in The Sunday Times.

Quote:
Half the audience for Shaolin — Wheel of Life, at London’s Peacock Theatre, may want to coo maternally over the young boy in saffron, squeaking out his warlike cries as his limbs flash out in kung-fu kicks. He does somersaults on his shaven cranium, and wraps his feet round his neck. An extraordinary acrobat, like the other 22 members of this agile company, he might be quite a little terror if he weren’t a novice monk.
MORE


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2002 3:13 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 3129
Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Review in The Independent.

Quote:
There are not many weeks of the year when kung fu would make it into a dance column. But with the Russian ballet stars' no-show at the South Bank, and the Indian dance week at Sadler's Wells snagged by airline problems, the monks of the Shaolin Temple in China have been nudged into first place. In any case, the put-upon critic reasons amiably, the martial arts are close cousins of dance. Think of their specialised demands on the body. Think of the long training and hard mental discipline, think, even, of the dance forms – Brazilian capoeira? – that derive directly from combat manoeuvres. Never mind that the primary purpose of kick-boxing is self defence. Once you put it on stage, it's dance.

MORE


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 10:51 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Everybody is kung-fu fighting
The Shaolin Monks' Wheel of Life show puts 1,500 years of martial arts history on stage
By Charlotte Cripps for The Independent

"I asked myself, why? Why would peaceful monks want to split foot-thick blocks with their bare hands?" says Steve Nolan, the producer of the Shaolin Monks' Shaolin: Wheel of Life show. In September 1999, Nolan flew to China and drove down a road resembling a Bruce Lee dream sequence, where kung fu weaponry shops lined the bumpy route to the Shaolin Temple. This, according to the monks, is the birthplace of martial arts, which were created here 1,500 years ago.

click for more


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2003 9:07 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 1638
Location: London UK
“Wheel of Life” with the Shaolin Monks looks set to be an exceptionally popular show, as on approaching the Peacock Theatre I encountered those opportunistic barometers of theatrical success, the ticket touts.

Inside, the theatre is transformed into a Chinese temple with banks of candles adorning the front of the stage, which is dominated by a huge golden Buddha, inscrutable behind a thick fog of incense. The monks make their entrances down the side aisles; first the senior clerics followed by the rank and file monks and finally the little children with shaven heads and saffron robes just like their elders. The show begins with individual monks showing off a sample of their skills, such as smashing metal bars across their heads and demonstrating the ways in which kung fu is influenced by the movements of various animals. After this introduction they act out the story of how a wicked warlord once threatened the emperor of China and how the Shaolin Monks went to his rescue, defeating the warlord with their superior skills in the martial arts. The emperor sought to reward them by offering to make them his personal bodyguards, but the monks only wanted to return to their temple. Angered by this rebuff the ungrateful emperor sought to kill all the monks treacherously, but five survived the slaughter to return to their temple and continue their traditions.

The story is relayed to the audience in the form of a voice-over that in tone and presentation reminded me very much of the linking sections of “Riverdance” and like “Riverdance” the action was punctuated by interludes of traditional music. The production looks slick and professional but the performers look like………well, monks actually, with slightly unworldly expressions and only the most modest acknowledgement towards the applause that rewarded their extraordinary feats.

For me the most attractive aspect of the performance was what I would call the overall spectacle, the jolly, colourful lion dances and the swirling bodies of the battle scene were particularly memorable and those cute little boys standing on one leg in a hyper-extension for what seemed an eternity.

So just how dance-orientated is a show about kung fu? Well, some years back when Bruce Lee was such a superstar it was customary for the film critics to refer to the “Balletic violence” of his movies, but the fighting techniques of Chinese martial arts really do seem possessed of a classical formality at times. One thing that struck me quite forcibly was their phenomenal elevation, so high as to put most premiere danseurs to shame. One monk even performed what looked like a double tour en l’air – only horizontally! Two very familiar names are credited as director and choreographer: Darshan Singh Bhuller and Micha Bergese, but I imagine their contributions are more about directing massed ranks of monks rather than demonstrating a handstand on the index fingers.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shaolin Monks
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2003 12:26 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Wheel of Life
By Clement Crisp for The Financial Times


The decrepit auditorium of the Peacock Theatre was heavy with the smell of joss-sticks, and ringing with birdsong. A vast statue of the Buddha was on stage, with candles, and soon the dubious clangings and sugary clangour of what is best indentified as a soundtrack. Enter, through the crowded auditorium, the orange-clad figures of Shaolin monks, whose story we are to be told. The stage is soon crowded with figures rampaging through all those Exocet leaps and flashing limbs of kung fu, interspersed by barking cries and the occasional heavily-baritoned narrative of these warriors' story. It is, I regret to say, a case of kung fu but no kung further.

click for more


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 12 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 7 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
The messages in this forum are posted by members of the general public and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of CriticalDance or its staff.
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group