State park pulls some strings to host Beijing puppet theater

August 23, 2011

By Staff

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission Folk Arts in the Parks Program presents a free performance of the Beijing rod puppet theater in Lake Sammamish State Park.

Puppeteers Zhengli Xu (left) and Yuqin Wang will perform at 6 p.m. Aug. 26 with the Beijing rod puppet theater in Lake Sammamish State Park. Contributed

No state Discover Pass for parking is needed for those attending this event.

The performance is at 6 p.m. Aug. 26 in the kitchen shelter at the park.

The state describes performers Dragon Art Studio, based in Portland, as an internationally acclaimed puppet theater and the only professional rod puppet theater in North America. Primary puppeteers Yuqin Wang and Zhengli Xu were trained in China at the Beijing Puppet Theater and the Beijing Opera School. Their daughter, Brenda Xu, is the third member of the troop.

Wang and Xu came to the U.S. in 1996 and performed at the Atlanta Olympics that summer. In 2004, they were named National Heritage Fellows by the National Endowment for the Arts.

The performance is part of a broader series of events celebrating the diverse culture represented in Washington. The program is a partnership between the Washington Parks and Recreation Commission, the Washington State Arts Commission and Northwest Heritage Resources. Funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Washington State Arts Commission and the Washington State Parks Foundation.

The Beijing puppet show is designed to be accessible to those with disabilities. If special accommodations are required in order to attend, call 649-4276. Those who are hearing or speech impaired may call the Washington Telecommunications Relay Service 800-833-6388 toll free. Requests must be made in advance.

Learn more about the Dragon Arts Studio at www.dragonartstudio.com.

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