Boating on Li River is a must on your Guilin tour and the cruise trip ends at Yangshuo, a leisure and picturesque town, about 70km to the southeast of Guilin city center. Although the town’s commercialization has cheapened its allure with the hordes of the domestic tourists, it does have some intriguing places to keep you busy for a couple of days and it also serves a perfect jumping off point to further dive into some more peaceful and authentic places like Xingping and Yangdi, and further extend to the well-preserved Huangyao Ancient Town.
Biking through Shili Scenery Gallery, Boating on Yulong River and Watching the mega performance of “Impression Liu Sanjie in the evening are the three things worth doing on your short trip to Yangshuo.
Impression Liu Sanjie is a mega performance carried out on the Li River landscape theatre, directed by the famous filmmaker Zhangyimou, who also directed the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympic Games. It is the first singing and dancing performance around the globe creatively staged in a natural theatre – with the backdrop of 12 peaks and the Li River.
Impression Liu Sanjie is based on the same name film produced in 1961 with Ms Liu Sanjie a household heroine who was a singing goddess in the legend of ethnic Zhuang minority group in Guangxi. But in the revised “Impression Liu Sanjie”, you won’t see any plots, characters and scenes, you only see a series of “impressions” which epitomize the landscapes and the ordinary life in the place where Ms Liu Sanjie was born and lived.
Zhang Yimou artistically blends the human performance with the natural landscapes culminating in a dazzling and magnificent mega performance. The performance is divided into 7 chapters – Preclude, Red Impression, Green Impression, Golden Impression, Blue Impression, Silvery Impression and Epilogue.
Chapter One: Preclude ( Legend of the Scenery )
Ms Liu Sanjie, a spirit of songs, was born among the rivers and montains.
Chapter Two: Red Impression ( Folk Songs )
The producer combines the fishing nets with the folk songs to form Duige, a kind of singing and asking other side to sing back. The red-colored fishing nets are waved on the river to forge a lively world.
Chapter Three: Green Impression ( Gardens )
The producer brings you back to the ordinary of the people in Li River, the beautiful land wherer Ms Liu Sanjie was born – Washing women, shepherd boys, cooking smoke, fishing rafts and the sunset.
Chapter Four: Golden Impression ( Fishing Lights )
All the actors and actress are the 200 fishing men and fishing women from the nearby 5 villages in Yangshuo. This chapter sheds the lights on the old working and living of the ordinary people. You will see the classical scenes – fishing lights, bamboo rafts, straw rain capes and cormorants. Fishing lights are the soul of this picture.
Chapter Five: Blue Impression ( Love Song)
This chapter depicts the love in the ordinary life by singing the love song to the effect that “It is the vine twining round the trees in the world. How can a tree rely on a vine. Without the trees, the vine would be dry as dust!”.
Chapter Six: Silvery Impression ( Grand Ceremony)
This section depicts the legendary grand ceremony performed by the ethnic minority people in the place. 200 girls dressed in silver lights garments give you a magnificent impression praised as the “Wonders of Li River Culture”.
Chapter Seven: The Epilogue (Songs of Heaven and Earth)
Fishing lights are gone; bamboo rafts are gone and the fishing lights are turned off, but Ms Liu Sanjie’s songs still linger in people’s minds.
Book your tickets through your hotel for discounts including transport to/from the landscape theatre ( 1.5km from the West Street in Yangshuo).
Any questions, just drop a line.