Wei Caiqi, a 15-year-old girl, the niece of famous Chinese dancer Yang Liping , became very popular after performing as “Time Girl” at the 2014 Spring Festival Gala several nights ago. Her four hours of nonstop spinning, rotating in a circle, not only stunned the audience but also incited public controversy. She was widely discussed on leading Chinese microblogging platform Sina Weibo…
From Sina Weibo:
@央视新闻: #Spring Festival Gala# Twirling for 4 Consecutive Hours, Click Upvote for Her! — Starting from now, up until the clock tolls 12 midnight. Xiao Caiqi [nickname of Wei Caiqi which means “little colorful flag”] will spin for 4 consecutive hours, until the clock tolls 12 midnight, where she will stop rotating and welcome the new [lunar] year with good fortune! Hurry and give her an upvote! [This microblog post was published at 8:25pm on January 30th and currently remains among the top 10 most popular posts of the week.]
@思想聚焦: Why was there such a ridiculous program [performance]?!!!!! Although we like Xiao Caiqi, we absolutely do not approve of such a pointless [performance]. Xiao Caiqi is a person, not a machine, nor was the camera pointed at her all the time either. Twirling for several hours, was it for a Guinness Record? [I] Reject this kind of abusive “art”! Those in agreement, please forward/reshare [this post]!
@刘胜军改革: A 15-year-old girl spinning there [on the stage] for four hours, to this I can only say it is sick, a perversion of values, a projection of GDP-ism.
蒋胜男： Alright then, looking over old blogs, Xiao Caiqi has been twirling like this on tour many times, so don’t make a big deal about it as if some child was abused last night. She’s liked spinning ever since she was little, and has a different sense of equilibrium than you people, treating spinning around as a game, a challenge, as self-cultivation [the process of training and exercise to reach some kind of ideal asceticism].
@的灰: I see a lot of people questioning the meaning/point of Xiao Caiqi’s spinning… Before I myself watched The Peacock [a dance drama by Yang Liping in which Caiqi was twirling for the entire show], I also thought this setting [the role of ‘time girl’ that Xiao Caiqi played in CCTV Gala] was a little boring/pointless, but from the perspective of being present in the live audience, the effect is quite stunning. The little girl’s powerful aura, her exquisite performance, manifested the steady, solemn, somewhat melancholic passing of time, the aesthetic feeling unforgettable even now. The only thing to blame is the poor broadcast direction of the Spring Festival Gala, giving her so too little screen time, without showing the details of her expression and body movements at all. What more, the most splendid part, the ending pose, was cut out.
@果壳问答: How Many Circles Did Xiao Caiqi Twirl During the Spring Festival Gala? — Revolucion： At around 9 o’clock, her spinning speed was about one rotation per 1.7 seconds, while during the last phase, she twirled very fast, about one circle per 0.76 seconds. If we assume that she uniformly accelerated from 1.7 seconds to 0.76 seconds, then the average speed was 0.95 seconds per circle. Calculated this way, she twirled more than 15,000 circles. If the moon spun this many times, it would have moved from The Tang dynasty Zhenyuan period to the present.
Comments from Sina Weibo:
They didn’t even introduce her at the end of the Spring Festival Gala.
Actually, it’s not like she was forced to twirl…This is their family’s unique skill.
The Spring Festival Gala has risen to the level of a national project, but we don’t want to see such national projects like this! A return to nature, return to rationality and simplicity is what should be done!
What does this have to do with GDP? [You] do not understand how to respect others.
Dancing and spinning happen to be Xiao Caiqi’s livelihood, and there is nothing wrong with relying on one’s own abilities for a living! This is the value of the market, just like how the value of an acrobat’s existence is being able to do some shocking actions, and if there weren’t a platform like this, how are they supposed to make a living?
This is Sufi Whirling, originating from Turkey, a kind of religious dance. Dancers twirling is a form of meditation, where after spinning a number of circles they can reach a meditative state without becoming dizzy. Moreover, most of people who learn dancing know that the key to spinning without becoming dizzy is to find a fixed point. By staring at this point when twirling, you won’t feel dizzy but this still needs a lot of time to practice.
Ballet/dances after all face the theater’s audience. The audience can see the entire stage, can understand the story the dance is narrating, can enjoy the artistry of the dancing. But the Spring Festival Gala is rebroadcasted on television, so having a girl silently twirling for four hours, the audience [in front of TVs] don’t see her 90% of the time and don’t know what she is about.
I always thought that [Xiao Caiqi] was a puppet.
Cruel, perverse, pointless!
I really want to know how much electrical energy Xiao Caiqi generated during those four hours?
Xiao Caiqi, thank you for your hard work in maintaining the electrical power throughout the entire Gala. I on behalf of people across the country thank you.
This is Teacher Yang Liping’s niece. She plays the part of ‘Time’ during Teacher Yang’s musicals, where she spins nonstop.
What do you think? Is this pointless or is there artistry in such a performance?