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Click here to download a printable PDF Flyer of our "Bawshou & the Dragon" performance (see also below)
Workshop options available, for enhanced participation opportunities.
Call to request a detailed PowerPoint presentation of this program, including our extended School Artist Residencies

"Bawshou & The Water Dragon" Pageant
A Traditional Chinese Hero Tale

adapted & performed by Sondra and John Bromka,
Bells & Motley Olden Music, Dance, and Storytelling

"Highly participatory storytelling, workshops, and performances...
A thoroughly engaging Cultural immersion"
For schools and libraries, children and families

Sondra & John Bromka, Aurora Opera House

Exploring Chinese Cultural Traditions
through story, symbolism, song, instruments, movement, and stillness.

Every Hero has a Story...

Dig deep into a cave of the earth--the Sun has been captured by a Fearsome Dragon and hidden away. The Hero of our tale is Bawshou, a young man who courageously rises to the challenge of freeing the Sun. With the help of a golden phoenix, a small parcel of earth, a magic robe, and a heroic dream, Bawshou travels afar to seek out and rescue the Sun, for the good of his people and all the land.

The artists evoke a magical atmosphere in this important Chinese tale, employing authentic oriental techniques and traditions including stylized dramatic forms and movement, mythology, exotic costumes, and music.

Our marvelous Traditional Chinese Folk Instruments -- erhu, pipa, guzheng, harp, sona, Chinese Theatre drums, flutes & whistles, and gong choir -- are featured, combining to make this unforgettable performance piece a joyous and resonant celebration of oriental culture. Instruments range from loud to soft, droning and pointed, wind, string, percussion of all kinds. Made of wood, bone, earth, horn, metal, skin, each will find a different place in the story to resonate, and many played by the audience themselves!

Many options for children to participate!

DRAGON MASK-MAKING WORKSHOP: Before the start of the show, our traditional offering begins with a dragon attributes discussion, followed by a dragon mask-making workshop led by the artists. Our mask-makers are thus prepared to play the starring role of the roaring, dancing, multi-headed dragon.

CHINESE LANTERN MAKING:If additional time is available, students will also create colorful dragon lanterns, decorated with Chinese calligraphy for the Dragon, Phoenix, Star, Sun...and other key elements of the story. Lanterns will then be used for a special dance in the performance.

LOTS OF OTHER ACTIVE ROLES: Children of all ages may also actively participate in many other ways as they portray the flowing river; use instrumentation to make the sounds of the sea; perform in the multi-gong choir; portray a dancing star; dance as a ghost villager, and much more!

For a variety of venues and celebrations:
  • Upcoming Library Summer Reading Programs:
  • 2018 on the Theme of Music, so many rare and wondrous instruments audiences will love!
  • 2019 on the Theme of the Universe, our young hero Bawshou rescues the SUN!
  • Flexible - Has been set up in a wide variety of venues, from Opera houses to "in the library stacks"
  • Wonderful for Chinese New Year's Celebrations!
  • To complement Art Gallery Special Exhibits, other events at Cultural Institutions
  • Elementary & Secondary Schools, as a Common Core Humanities enrichment combining Chinese music and literary themes, symbolism, and more
  • Customized school artist residencies are available; many past examples; ask!
  • Matching grants are available to help support our programs, and we are available to partner with schools in writing applications.
  • Commissions for new concerts and pageants are encouraged and welcomed! Please inquire.
    'Bawshou' was commissioned by the Springfield MA Museum of Fine Arts in 1994.

Children creating their dragon masks

Performing our roles

The Ghost Village awaits with their lanterns!

Click here to open the "Bawshou & the Dragon" flyer below as a printable PDF,
details about our Chinese Traditional Musical Storytelling programs for schools and libraries, children and families.

Great feedback from our audiences!

Wonderful words from children

To view, click here for p.1, p.2, p.3,

And from libraries,
including Canastota Library!

To view, click on photos
  Sample School References

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�2014 Sondra Bromka. All rights reserved in all media.