Chinese Carib ArtsLink with performers JACQUI CHAN, SIN-MAN YUÉ and SU-LIN LOOI
Chinese Carib Artslink Patrons: Yvonne Brewster OBE, Raymond Chai, Burt Kwouk, Edwin Lung, Greta Mendez, Susie Wong MBE,
The Jingwei Bird is created with the support of
Arts Council England, Westminster Arts, Woodend Creative, UK Foundation for Dance Performances 7.30pm Wed 18, Thu 19 & Fri 20 November 2009.
Trinidadian-born actor, dancer and writer JACQUI CHAN has scripted a powerful and entertaining ‘theatre-collage’
incorporating text, poetry, traditional stories, dance, music and martial art, inspired by the life of Chiu Chin (1875-1907),
the Chinese feminist, poet and national heroine.
In Chinese legend, The Jingwei Bird was the vengeful soul of a drowned princess, who vowed to stop the ocean claiming
further victims, by dropping pebbles painstakingly into the sea.
This image of tackling the impossible inspired Chiu Chin, who devoted her extraordinary life to challenging the
traditionally low status of women in China, left her husband and children for Japan, where she became the first female
member of Sun Yat Sen’s republican Kuomintang party, adopted men’s dress, ran a radical newspaper and a women’s
martial arts academy in Shanghai and was executed for treason in the final years of the corrupt, crumbling Imperialist
“Her hot heart was given, a whetstone, that the country might sharpen its blunt sword” (engraved on Chiu Chin’s burial
monument in Huangzhou)
Jacqui Chan’s career has embraced dance, musical theatre, drama, TV, radio and films. Originally trained in ballet, she
was featured in West End musicals The King & I, Kismet, Simply Heavenly and The World of Suzie Wong, at the Royal
Court in Moon On A Rainbow Shawl, at the Albery Theatre in Plenty with Cate Blanchett, and in films with Elizabeth
Taylor, Maximilien Schell, John Malkovitch and Jean Claude van Damme. In her devised work, Jacqui draws on her
experience of world theatre forms including Noh, Kathakali and Peking Opera.
“Jacqui Chan’s spoken delivery was beautifully modulated and clear, but it was her physical possession of [the character]
which drew her audience in. Tiny, fragile… it was Jacqui Chan’s body that expressed her hope, her joy and ultimately her
despair.” (Independent on Sunday 2006 review of Jacqui Chan’s Fragrant Orchid at Royal Opera House, London)
The Cockpit Theatre
Gateforth Street (off Church Street), London NW8 8EH
reservations: 020 7258 2925
Tickets £10 (£5 students & under-16s)
Available on the door (cash or cheques only) or in advance by email (email@example.com)
or telephone voicemail (020 7258 2925)
Performances last 75 minutes. No latecomers admitted.