Rhapsody in Silver
The Soldiers Acrobatic Troupe under the Guangzhou Military Command won awards for Jumping Through Hoops on the Ground, Diabolo Playing and Two-Person Pole
Climbing in international competition during the 1980s. During the 1990s, the troupe captured the Clown d'Or for its Two-Person Bowl Balancing Act performed
at the 17th Festival International du Cirque Monte-Carlo, as well as the President of the Republic of France Award for Juggling Rugs with the Feet at the Fourth Festival Mondial du Cirque de I'Avenir and the President of the Republic of France Award for Big Springboard Stunts by Women at the 15th Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain.
Rhapsody in Silver, which is perhaps one of the best routines created by the troupe in recent years, won a gold medal at a competition in Paris in January 1995. The troupe also won the Princess Christina Cup, the top prize, at the first World Acrobatics Festival and Circus for Women in Stockholm in April 1995 and the first prize at the Fourth National Acrobatic Competition held in Shenyang in September the same year.
The Guangzhou Soldiers Acrobatic Troupe created Rhapsody in Silver to celebrate the convening of the Fourth World Congress for Women held in Beijing in 1995.
The collective act, based on traditional acrobatic art, includes various movements similar to those in gymnastics. Performers must possess good jumping and balancing skills, as well as exceptional leg and waist strength and excellent handstand techniques. Generally speaking, this particular routine was performed by men of great strength, with only one young lightweight female acrobat involved in the performance. The routine consists of a series of highly difficult movements that show the unlimited potential of men's strength and ability and reflects their lofty sentiment and the spirit of constantly forging ahead.
However, Rhapsody in Silver performed entirely by female acrobats with the Soldiers Acrobatic Troupe features such highly difficult movements. For example, eight acrobats execute a succession of double reverse somersaults while keeping their bodies straight. Two acrobats grasp hands after one completes two and a half somersaults and the other one and a half somersaults. The routine includes a four-person pyramid with the acrobat on top performing a handstand on only one hand. The routine also includes acrobats performing quadruple somersaults while maintaining straight bodies. One acrobat performs a one and a half forward somersault prior to landing in the hands of another performer. The latter throws the former into the air three times prior to completion of the somersault routine. The act not only show that women have entered a field once dominated by men, but also show the addition of feminine beauty to muscular activity.
Rhapsody in Silver is a highly difficult act that reflects the human desire to surpass previous achievements, break away from confinement on the earth and fly into the immense starry sky and space. The act we see today has undergone five revisions. Rhapsody in Silver, a routine famous for its difficult skills, artistic integrity and rich philosophy, has won numerous awards in international competition and has won the acclaim of audiences worldwide. It has attained a high level of artistry by perfectly integrating highly difficult acrobatic skills with graceful dance movements. The combination of excellent stage design, lighting, musical accompaniment, costumes and spotlights and stars in the immense sky enables the routine to break from the practice of simply striving for the effect of merry dance and music.