Mao's Last Dancer

ISBN-10: 0425201333
ISBN-13: 9780425201336
Edition: N/A
Authors: Li Cunxin
List price: $18.00 Buy it from $2.49
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Description: From a desperately poor village in northeast China, at age eleven, Li Cunxin was chosen by Madame Mao's cultural delegates to be taken from his rural home and brought to Beijing, where he would study ballet. In 1979, the young dancer arrived in  More...

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Book details

List price: $18.00
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 3/1/2005
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 480
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.034
Language: English

From a desperately poor village in northeast China, at age eleven, Li Cunxin was chosen by Madame Mao's cultural delegates to be taken from his rural home and brought to Beijing, where he would study ballet. In 1979, the young dancer arrived in Texas as part of a cultural exchange, only to fall in love with America-and with an American woman. Two years later, through a series of events worthy of the most exciting cloak-and-dagger fiction, he defected to the United States, where he quickly became known as one of the greatest ballet dancers in the world. This is his story, told in his own inimitable voice.

Li Cunxin was born into poverty in the Shandong province of People's Republic of China. At the age of eleven, he was selected by Madame Mao's cultural advisers to attend the Beijing Dance Academy, where students endured 16-hour days of training. He was one of the first students from the Beijing Dance Academy to go to the United States. In the 1970s, he joined Ben Stevenson's Houston Ballet company as an exchange student. He also began a relationship with an aspiring American dancer, Elizabeth Mackey. They quickly got married so that Li could remain in the United States and avoid deportation. In the end, his Chinese citizenship was revoked. In 1995 he moved to Melbourne to join the Australian Ballet. In 1987 he married again to Australian dancer Mary McKendry. They have three children together. In 2003 Li published his autobiography, Mao's Last Dancer. The book has become a feature film with the same title. It will be released in 2010.

A Wedding: Qingdao, 1946
My Childhood
Home
My Niang and Dia
A Commune Childhood
The Seven of Us
Na-na
Chairman Mao's Classroom
Leaving Home
Beijing
Feather in a Whirlwind
The Caged Bird
That First Lonely Year
The Pen
My Own Voice
Teacher Xiao's Words
Turning Points
The Mango
Change
On the Way to the West
The Filthy Capitalist America
Good-bye, China
The West
Return to the Land of Freedom
Elizabeth
Defection
My New Life
A Millet Dream Come True
No More Nightmares
Russia
Mary
Going Home
Back in My Village
Another Wedding: Qingdao, 1988
Postscript
The Li Family Tree
Acknowledgments

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