Two weeks ago I went to an art exhibition at the Guangzhou Fine Arts Academy, invited by a friend whose friend is a graduating student:
The main exhibit was full of design prototypes for the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou ("Thrilling Games, Harmonious Asia!"), including subway signs, tickets, brochures; even real, edible food, which I ate. Other halls contained environmental art, such as this fashionable gown that doubles as a pup tent:
This arrangement of dolls would be unnoteworthy if not for.....
...the little girl in the front reading "The Art of War"! If this were a training exercise, I would definitely shoot her in the forehead. Please comment if you understood that reference.
Speaking of guns...
Bam! That man is made of bullets. Fun fact: The following classic piece of musical cinema was filmed at the Guangzhou Fine Arts Academy (the MeiYuan of which the young man speaks is from Guangzhou MeiShu XueYuan):
Wow, does that movie make a lot more sense after teaching Chinese high schoolers....
In other news, one week ago I participated in the joint performance of classes 10 and 11 in their attempt to convince the teachers of Senior 2 Level to include their performance in the upcoming HuaFu's 120th Anniversary celebration banquet. At the invitation to perform, I said, "Wouldn't it be unfair to the other classes if you guys had a teacher acting in your skit?". "No," said Lemons, the girl who had texted me the invitation. "Okay," I consented (mostly because her name is just too cute). Here is my view from backstage:
My part in the skit was to play a teacher ("Be stern!" said Lemons, her face almost comically severe. "And whatever you do, DON'T LAUGH!"). I was to enter the stage, tell the students to continue doing their homework, then exit the stage. The catch was they wanted me to say this in Chinese. "不要休息! 继续做作业!" Well, I said it, and the entire audience simultaneously peed their pants with glee. Any consternation from the administration at seeing a teacher participate in a student production was instantly mollified by the circus-like appeal of a white man speaking Chinese, and I exited the stage to the sounds of raucous applause and laughter and pants-wetting.
I also did a little juggle-juggle at an NGO Christmas party last week, and found myself deriving a certain strange satisfaction from watching everyone absent-mindedly play with my balls while watching the other performers (now that I think about it, maybe it's related to the ass-penny phenomenon).
I'm going to have another performance to report after Tuesday morning; that's when David and I are performing in the South China Normal University International Culture Festival Pageant. "How did we get roped into that one?" would be a reasonable question, to which the answer would be: the woman at the office where we went to pick up our HSK scores mistook us for undergrads (ha!). Result: David is singing opera in a warrior costume, and I'm an emcee. I was told that I was chosen for this part because I would look good next to the Russian girl, Victoria, who is the other foreign emcee (she's taller than David, which would apparently make for hideously bad feng shui were he to appear next to her). Tomorrow I'm off to rent something blue and silky to wear, and yesterday I spent all day yesterday practicing and memorizing the script. Victoria and I have lines like, "Two thousand years ago? Wow, China's history sure is long and prosperous!" and "Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon? Why do you use such scary animals to describe our lovable teachers?" Again, it's all in Chinese. This time though, I'll have a microphone and a partner in whiteness. I will be very surprised if hilarity does not ensue.