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Cai Qi takes her time

Updated: 2012-11-16 09:35
By Pauline D. Loh ( China Daily)

Cai Qi takes her time

Cai Qi spinning her way through Yang Liping's recent production, Peacock. Provided to China Daily

She was positioned at the lower left of the stage, and she did not leave that spot for the entire production. Yet, she got the loudest applause of all at the Beijing performances of Peacock.

Related: Pride of the peacock

Cai Qi, 13 going on 14, is the young niece of Yang Liping, and widely considered as the "heir apparent" of her aunt's legacy. However, the young lady has publicly said she has not made up her mind if she wants to spend her life dancing on stage. She is also pondering photography or archeology, she told the audience in a provincial television interview.

Cai Qi takes her time

Yang Liping's dance drama 'The Peacock' staged

Cai Qi takes her time

Peacock's last bow launches dance fest

There is no doubt she loves dancing, and she has been watching her aunt at rehearsals ever since she was a baby, refusing to go home even when it was way past bedtime. By the time she was out of training pants, she already had bit parts in her aunt's Dynamic Yunnan.

They discovered that the little girl loved to spin, and she could do it without getting dizzy.

This particular talent is exploited in her role as Time in Peacock, and to be sure, few people would have been able to perform the role as well as Cai Qi did - spinning on one foot continuously for two hours.

It is obvious that talent continues in the family, and Cai Qi has already shown enough to earn her accolades.

In a Spring Festival special on Hunan Television this year, she debuted on air in a dance named Spring with her famous aunt, but that was not her first public appearance.

Her performances in the Dynamic Yunnan series started when she was 5 and Yang Liping has this to say about her niece.

"To be a dancer, you need to be able to suffer long, hard hours. We had auditioned other children before, but they would come accompanied by parents and family, and after a day or two, they would call it quits.

"Cai Qi is different. She is really passionate about dance, and she would dance all hours of the day. Once, even after a long hard evening performing, she was still dancing in her own room - at 2 am.

"She's the first student I have found worthy of my full-time devotion as a teacher. She is special, and her attitude and passion reminds me of myself when I was her age."

When you are endorsed by no less than a deity of dance, the expectations are high and the burden of legacy heavy.

But Cai Qi already has the right genes, and certainly she now has all the right opportunities.

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