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Puppets battle it out on London stage (2)

By Sun Li (China Daily)

16:24, August 08, 2012

Despite his rich experience performing abroad, the 49-year-old veteran puppet show artist says he feels way more excited because this time it is against the background of the London 2012 Olympic Games this time.

"I've never been to London before, and I'm proud that now that I finally have such a chance to present puppetry to the whole world," Hong says.

Jinjiang glove puppetry started in the Jin Dynasty (AD 265-420) and developed rapidly during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), but the time-honored art form is still not widely known, Hong says.

Cai Meina, one of the performers and an award-wining puppeteer, admits she is slightly anxious.

"I feel really excited to perform at the Olympic Games. I can empathize with the pressure felt by those athletes," Cai says.

The 31-year-old says she has been putting in extra hours to practice and ensure a successful performance.

"The puppet show doesn't have dialogues but, foreign audiences will understand the facial expressions and the body language," says Cai.

She says the London performance is special - not only do the audiences get to see the puppets act on stage, they will get to witness the skills of the puppeteers as they use one hand to control a sword-wielding character to fight another armed puppet.

"I'm sure the interaction will wow the audience," adds Cai.

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