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Feature: Egyptians aghast at breathtaking shows of Shaolin Kung Fu

(Xinhua)    20:46, October 26, 2016

CAIRO, Oct. 26  -- The audience at Egypt's Gomhoriya Theatre in Cairo applauded excitedly and stood from their seats in reaction to breathtaking shows of Chinese Shaolin warriors who perform in Egypt for two days.

"I'm stunned; I could not believe it was going to be that great," Mariam Ahmed, a 20-year-old Chinese language college student told Xinhua after the show. "I have seen this before in movies, but could not believe that it even looks greater in reality."

The show of the Buddhist Shaolin Temple Monks in Henan Province is part of the 2016 China-Egypt Culture Year jointly launched by Egypt and China to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic relations.

The show performed at the night from 25th to 27th October, is hosted by the Chinese Cultural Center in Egypt with the goals of enriching and intensifying the already strong mutual cultural ties.

"These events are very important specially for people who are learning Chinese like me...this gives us much more knowledge about China as it brings the Chinese culture to us," Ahmed said.

During the 90-minute show, adult monks took the audience, which also included many Chinese, on a journey through China's mysteries and ancient history through their magical displays.

Performers from the Shaolin Temple showed their supernatural abilities by displaying extremely complicated moves and skills such as a two finger Zen, group fighting, Shaolin traditional boxing, Shaolin hard Qingong in addition to other skills like the professional use of Kung Fu weapons.

Effortlessly, the monks flew unbelievably through the air in a series of back flips and spins, holding their Shaolin weapons.

Shaolin Kung Fu, also called Shaolin Wushu, is among the oldest institutionalized styles of Chinese martial arts. It originated and was developed in the Buddhist Shaolin Temple in Henan Province, Central China.

During the 1500 years of its development, Shaolin Kung Fu became one of the largest schools of Kung Fu.

The performance turned more attractive as warriors mixed drama with the traditional Chinese martial arts when they performed drunken boxing, sword and rod, a traditional dramatic show that was warmly applauded by the audience.

Observing the reactions of the spectators, Shi Yan'ao, a Shaolin Master invited a number of the audience on stage to teach them some techniques of the Chinese martial arts.

"This is incredible; it's the first time I go through such a marvelous experience. I thought it would be easy to perform these moves, but this really requires great concentration and flexibility," Hossam Mustafa, a college student said after being trained for a few minutes by Master Shi.

Seemingly, the show did not only captivate the hearts and minds of the Egyptian audience.

"I have seen Shaolin Kung-fu when I was back in China, but I have never seen it here in Cairo," Ma Xuecheng, a freshman at Cairo University, told Xinhua.

The young man said his favorite one is the group-fighting show, with each performer showing the utmost strength and skillfulness of Chinese Kung-fu.

Meanwhile, Master Shi said the event is organized by China's Ministry of Culture as a celebration of the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries.

"We brought Shaolin Kung-fu to the warm and lovely Egyptian audience here with the hope of strengthening the mutual understanding between the two peoples," he told Xinhua after the show.

Traditional Chinese martial art has become a popular sport in Egypt as it attracts more and more local Egyptians to practice on a daily basis at hundreds of Kung Fu schools across the North African country.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Du Mingming, Bianji)

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