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Chinese leaders watch art performance by disabled people
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08:04, September 12, 2008

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 China highlights disabled people's welfare as Paralympics draws near
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With the Beijing Paralympic Games under way, Chinese President Hu Jintao and other top leaders watched a musical and dancing performance staged by disabled artists in Beijing on Thursday night.

The grand show, titled "My Dream," was presented by the China Disabled People's Performing Art Troupe (CDPPAT) in the Poly Theatre in downtown Beijing. Specially prepared for the Beijing Olympics and Paralympics, the show has been continuously modified and Thursday's was already its fifth edition.

Chinese President Hu Jintao (C) talks to International Paralympic Committee President Philip Craven (L) as International Olympic Committee Honorary President Juan Antonio Samaranch looks on before a performance dubbed "My Dream" presented by China Disabled People's Performing Art Troupe at the Poly Theatre in Beijing Sept. 11, 2008

Sitting among the audience were Party and state leaders Wu Bangguo, Wen Jiabao, Jia Qinglin, Li Changchun, Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, He Guoqiang and Zhou Yongkang, as well as International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Philip Craven and International Olympic Committee Honorary President Juan Antonio Samaranch.

The performance -- a mixture of music, dancing, Peking Opera, dancing drama and music drama -- has been a hit since its debut on Aug. 10, staged for more than 40 times in the Chinese capital.

The performance on Thursday night began with a poem titled "My Dream," which was presented by performers using the sign language.

"We are trying to hear sounds and rhythms in silence, to see light in darkness, and to pursue perfection with disabilities," the poem goes.

In a classical repertoire of the troupe called the Thousand-hand Bodhisattva, Tai Lihua, a deaf dancer with great popularity in China, led 20 other hearing-impaired dancers in golden costumes to perform in breath-taking synchronicity.

Other highlights of the show included singing by disabled vocalists, playing of traditional Chinese musical instruments by blind musicians, and rhythmic dances and Peking Opera performance by blind, deaf or amputated artists.

Amazed by the spectacular show, the entire audience, including President Hu and IPC chief Craven, warmly applauded time and again to show their respect for the artists.

When the show ended, Hu, Craven and others also ascended the stage to shake hands with the performers and congratulate them on the success of the performance.

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