The third night of the Asia-Pacific Youth Arts Festival saw a lot of variety in the 13 performances that were presented. A rock and roll band from the Philippines opened the show followed by some traditional dancing from Micronesia, a solo performance from a young Japanese pop singer, Takuya Kumats, and a traditional Apsara dance by some performers from Cambodia who were wearing exquisitely intricate costumes.

Then came a group of very energetic dancers from Bangladesh, but during one of the moves in which male dancer jumped over three others, he slipped on the stage on landing and fell flat on his back. He was knocked unconscious, and lay there not moving until the end of the dance routine. Most people thought it was part of the act – until all the other dancers had left the stage and two stagehands dragged the unconscious dancer off the stage. Someone later told me that they could see them administering CPR on the dancer in the side wings, but I heard later that he had been taken to hospital with concussion, but was otherwise okay. It was fortunate that he was not more seriously injured.

The Bangladesh dance routine was followed by a more traditional dance from Thailand in which several dancers took the part of puppets, with other dancers manoeuvering their arms and legs. It was a dance that I had not seen before and was very well presented with the ‘puppet’ dancers wearing spectacular costumes:


After a guest performance by popular Malaysian singer Tan Kheng Seong, the Chinese entry of the night comprised a solo acrobatic performance by a teenage member of the Chinese Acrobatics Group in which he enthralled the audience with his amazing sense of balance on the soft steel wire:


Then a conservatively dressed solo female performer from Indonesia presented a soft ballad in English that she had composed herself, which was followed by two very unconservatively dressed singers from Mongolia called Sister Twins. They were dressed in sexy lingerie outfits and they performed a hard hitting number which involved gyrating their bums towards the audience which generated some loud cheers and screams from the appreciative young audience:


Then another very unconservative act from five male and three female dancers from Pakistan, which on the programme was labeled ‘Traditional Dance’. It was more like a Bollywood performance than what I would call a traditional dance – as I was watching it, the thought crossed my mind that the Taliban definitely would not approve if they saw it.

Finally a performance from a cultural dance group from Mauritius, and that wrapped up another very entertaining night with just as much variety as the previous two nights. The amount of talent that has assembled here in Shenzhen this week for these performances is mind-blowing. I feel very lucky to be here.

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