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Lao actors learn acrobatics in China

Updated:2019-11-06 16:24:57   Yunnan Gateway

July 16, 2019 in Laos

Hatsadi Angmatsa, aged 15, is the youngest in the Lao troupe.

At the request of the Lao National Acrobatic Troupe, the Ministry of Commerce of China provided training for eight Lao acrobatic actors in 2016. Back then, 13 applied for the training, and Hatsadi was not on the list at first.

To seize the chance, little Hatsadi talked to head of the Lao troupe team several times, saying that he was willing to “leave his parents and study hard in China if the chance is given”.

Hatsadi’s words moved the Chinese and Lao persons in charge of the program, who, given the thriving China-Laos relations under the Belt and Road Initiative, managed to increase the number allowed to 13 from eight.

It was the increase that made it possible for the 12-year-old Hatsadi to learn acrobatics in China.

Young as he was, Hatsadi worked hard. Thanks to the patience and encouragement of the Chinese coach, he exercised much and soon learned to wheel dishes and carpets.

"My dream is to be a top acrobat and make the Lao acrobatics known to the world," said Hatsadi.

"I see Chinese acrobatics as awesome."

Established in 1966, the LNAT is the only acrobatic troupe in Laos. At the beginning stage, the Lao first acrobats were not as skillful as the world-class actors.

Eager to succeed, they turned to the Hebei Wuqiao Acrobatic Art School in north China, a famed trainer in acrobatics. 

The Chinese school first trained three acrobats for the LNAT in 2015. Returning to Laos, they made a hit and became pillar actors in the Lao troupe.

In 2018, another two Lao acrobats, who had been trained in China, won the second prize at a Thai acrobatic show. 

"So far, we’ve trained 40 plus acrobats for the LNAT, with over 30 special programs designed for them,” said Qi Zhiyi, vice president of the Wuqiao acrobatics school. “We also presented them props and costumes."

"Chinese acrobatics stands out in the world, showing the delicate balance between body and props. Lao actors benefited a lot from training in China. Beside wheeling dishes, straw hats and rings, they are also good at playing ropes, cubes, diabolo and rope hanging.” Khamlek Soukchanthalavong, head of the Lao National Acrobatic Troupe, said.

"In the past five years, 42 LNAT members have been trained in China,” said Khamlek, adding that 12 took part in the training programs in 2019.

"By continuing acrobatics exchanges with China, we can jointly carry forward cultural heritages of the two countries, whiling improving the actors’ skills."

By Yang Chunmei, Zhu Dongran and Wang Shixue

Keywords:   Lao actors acrobatics China