Film director Zhang Yimou achieved international acclaim with his production of the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
If you were impressed with his Olympics production, you will be in awe of his Impression series which he has been creating years before the 2008 Olympics.
Impression is a series of shows throughout China which highlight nature’s beauty and the legends of Chinese traditions. Using the natural environment as the outdoor stage, Yimou impresses audiences with his masterful creations with lights, music, and choreography.
Witnessing his shows are a tourism draw. Impression Sanjie Liu in Yangshuo, Impression Lijiiang, and Impression West Lake are must-see productions for any lover of the arts – and even if you aren’t you will undoubtedly be impressed with Zhang Yimou’s Impression.
Impression West Lake Show, Hangzhou
Yimou’s third Impression production premiered in 2007 in Hangzhou’s West Lake using the water as the physical stage.
Impression West Lake recounts a thousand-year-old love story in a five-act play through the couple’s encounter, falling in love, saying goodbye, their memories, and the lasting impression.
The open-air production uses all of the lake’s natural beauty – from the waters to the trees to the mountains in the backdrop. The co-star of the stage is the lighting production which draws in audiences through colors and movement. Equally astonishing, if not more, is the cast of hundreds of actors and dancers flowing in rhythm to the enchanting music.
The production briefly closed for renovations and revamping. It reopened earlier this year to more rave reviews. The show was most recently presented to the G20 Summit impressing the leaders of the world.
You can book tickets online through private tour operators or ask your hotel’s concierge for assistance. There are various seating options, including a VIP Boat Seat. While that may be appealing, the vantage point from the center seats has optimal views of the entire production.