American Airlines is a sponsor of the May event, as well as four performances of Silk Road to be held at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City (davidhkochtheater.com).
Performed by the Gansu Dance Theatre based in northwest China, Silk Road debuted in 1979 and has been seen by an estimated 4 million people worldwide. The Beijing Daily has praised the theater group for its innovative use of “Dunhuang dance with some elements of modern dance.”
The show follows the odyssey of a painter and his daughter. It emerges as a celebration of cross-cultural friendship, depicting the Chinese of the Tang Dynasty encountering the people of different countries along the famous Silk Road, which originally was a trade route that stretched from China to the Roman Empire.
The lyrical saga, which highlights Xi’an, the eastern terminus of the Silk Road, ends happily, with the finale featuring a rainbow of flowers representing conciliation and acceptance. The cultural capital of Xi’an is known best for its sprawling mausoleum known as the Terracotta Army, which dates from 210–209 B.C. but was not discovered until 1974.