It is common for people to watch plays in an indoor theater that has the stage, lights, and sound equipment in an enclosed space, but have you ever thought about going to a nature outdoor theater for a different experience? Maybe you can consider going Yangshuo to appreciate Impression Sanjie Liu. The performance, with the natural mountains and water as the setting, has become a must for visitors to Yangshuo, a tourist attraction in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. It is also the world largest natural play staged on the waters of the Li River, in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. I’m sure that it will surely satisfy you greatly.
Sanjie Liu was a lady who lived in the city of Liuzhou which is 2 hours from Guilin. She was a traditional Chinese woman who worked so industriously in the fields. Besides her outstanding skills in formwork, Sanjie Liu was well known in Liuzhou for her beautiful and sweet singing voice. She would always sing while she worked in the fields. One day she left Liuzhou and came to Yangshuo on a bamboo raft and settled here. It is under the Big Banyan tree that Sanjie Liu tossed her love ball to her loved one, and the man accepted. And they fell in love with each othere in first sight, and they lived happily from then on. And their faithful love story is highly praised by countless people in China.
Impression Sanjie Liu is directed by a famous Chinese movie director Zhang Yimou , also the Director of Beijing 2008 Olympics Opening ceremony. Performances are carried out by local villagers and fishermen, particularly local minority groups as Zhuang and Yao. It was invested by Guilin Guangwei Wenhua Tourism and Culture Co. Ltd.，and they spend 5 years to complete the whole program. Perhaps the most distinguishing feature that makes the show completely different from performance of the other traditional ones is that the whole theatre is put into nature, and the performance changes according to the differences in scenery and weather of the four seasons. When it is rainy day, you can wear the raincoats prepared for you. The prepared liquid medicine will protect you from mosquitoes biting. If a flood comes, maybe half of the seats will be underwater. So this is the performance: a performance alongside nature. The auditorium is made up in the style of terraced fields, offering 2000 seats. Spectators can appreciate the scenery and performance over a two-kilometer (about 1.2 mils) panorama. The performance makes full use of the large-scale fantastic Colored lights and unique smoke edges to create an excellent visual effect. Endless sky and 12 peaks about 2km along Li River compose the stage of mountain and river backgrounds. The idea of this show is very innovative and is the first of its kind in the world. It expresses the beautiful scenery of the Li River，the colorful culture of the ethnic groups in Guangxi and the brave imagination of the excellent artists in China.
The show lasts about 70 minutes, which is surely a feast for your eyes. There are classical Sanjie Liu's folk songs and other activities that can represent exotic fishing culture, reflecting the harmony between human beings and the nature. It is different from the traditional artificial stage performance because Impression Sanjie Liu is a great work of both man and nature. The reflection of Karst hills in the charming Li River, misty and rains and the sound from nearby bamboo forests all of these will enable you to fully experience the unique nature beauty and the exquisite performance.
So we can see that the purpose of this show is to demonstrate the harmony between humans and nature. And the director Zhang Yimou once said that "We only do half of the work while the other half is done by the nature". What a fabulous inspiration of nature is! You should not miss this wonderful Impression Sanjie Liu when you are visiting Yangshuo.