CITY GUIDE >Culture and Events
Rumba in the (urban) jungle
(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-08-15 09:53

"Burn the Floor" is bringing its spectacular mixture of Latin and ballroom dancing to the Shanghai Grand Theater once again with four gala shows on Sept 18-19 and Oct 6-7.

The stunning show from Down Under features samba, salsa, waltz, flamenco, rumba, tango, swing and jive, not to mention bold costumes and great visual and audio effects.

Rumba in the (urban) jungle

The company, which premiered on Broadway at New York's Longacre Theater several weeks ago, will stage 20 performances in a dozen Chinese cities this year after the success of its maiden Shanghai shows in January.

"Latin and ballroom dancing have started to become really popular again internationally since 2005," said Mi Xiaocao, a spokeswoman for the performance sponsor in China, the Shanghai Municipal Performance Company.

"The performances in Shanghai will be of exactly the same quality as the Broadway show," Mi said. "Several new world champions have joined the tour to China and the opening show has been specially designed for this tour."

In the wake of the wildly popular American TV show "Dancing with the Stars", Chinese audiences' appetite for shows of this kind has mushroomed. Several TV stations in the country have already launched their own celebrity dancing shows.

"Burn the Floor" was inspired by something that happened at a birthday party in 1997 held by the ultimate showman, Elton John. Producer and birthday guest Harley Medcalf bore witness to what he later described as a "scintillating display of ballroom and Latin dancing at Elton's party (during which John) had 16 young energetic dancers mesmerize the packed room in a 20-minute dance display".

Medcalf, who was himself nominated for a Tony Award in 2005 for "Dame Edna: Back with a Vengeance," subsequently lost himself in the world of ballroom dancing.

Some 18 months later, the first shows were performed in London. It has since toured more than 32 countries and sold over 3 million tickets.

Sept 18-19, Oct 6-7; 7:15 pm

Shanghai Grand Theater

300 Renmin Avenue

人民大道300号,上海大剧院

Tel: 6272-1976/0310

Tickets: 200-1,280 yuan