Xijiang village in Guizhou Province (西江寨 - Xijiāng zhài)
October 2011The full name of the village, mentioned on the ticket, is translated as "One Thousand Household Miao Village" (西江千户苗寨 - Xijiāng qiān hù miáo zhài).
I arrived to Xijiang at 11:05 and immediately went to the village center, to my knowledge, the performance was to begin at 11:30 there.
All seats were occupied, but the Chinese tourists, as Agents Smith in the famous film, kept on arriving. They used to come from all corners, down from the mountain paths, leaving the buildings on the perimeter of the square. It became clear that even for good standing places I will have to fight. I stood in the front row behind the benches on the right side of the square, where you can take pictures without interference. I want to note that in the middle of performance, I decided to change the point of view and could not find a space where I could get.
An amusing episode happened before that. Dressed in traditional costumes boys and girls used to walk along the square and everybody came to take pictures with them. When they saw me, they rushed up to me and asked me to take pictures with them. I honestly did not expect this. In the tourist places I usually wait for some trick, so it did not occur to me to give them my "digital point and shoot" to be photographed with them and for myself.
The performance consisted of dancing, playing instruments, singing old men and playing with the audience. The best performance was left near the end. Playing the stringed instruments, the guys on half-bent "goose step" walked around the girls from time to time craning a goose neck forward, and those dancing, turned away. The musical accompaniment of this performance was also very unusual.