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Show at rebuilt temple site brings history to life

China Daily | Updated: 2016-11-02 07:49

Show at rebuilt temple site brings history to life

The 70-minute show Reveries of the Porcelain Pagoda depicts three stories related to the pagoda with the theme of repaying a debt of gratitude. Photos provided to China Daily

The Porcelain Pagoda in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, was first known to the Western world for its gorgeous colorful glaze in the 19th century. Then, every night, 140 lamps were lit for illumination.

Now, it's remarkably different when you visit the rebuilt tower in the Great Bao'en Temple at night, when it turns into a natural stage with the shining pagoda as the backdrop.

Two stages rise from the ground as performers dance, with projections of images such as running horses on the pagoda's surface, which is actually a screen.

The 70-minute show Reveries of the Porcelain Pagoda made its debut in early October and it will run through Nov 15. It depicts three stories related to the pagoda with the theme of bao'en, which means repaying a debt of gratitude.

The stories featured cover the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) emperor Yongle's filial affection for his mother; Tang Dynasty (618-907) monk Xuanzang's adventures when he traveled from China to India to collect sutras and how Siddhartha Gautama became the Buddha.

Nanjing citizens over the age of 50 can watch the show for free if they bring their children, who must pay for their own tickets.

"It's the first real scenery show at a historical site museum. The spirit of bao'en is a traditional Chinese value that we should promote," says Mei Shuaiyuan, the show's chief director. He is also the chairman of Scenery Culture Co, Ltd based in Beijing.

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