The Shangri-La Chinese Acrobats perform dazzling feats of flexibility at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre as part of the centre 12th annual birthday bash

Centre flips for its 12th birthday with Shangri-La Chinese Acrobats

A tour de force of tumbling, gymnastics, mind-over-matter feats and balancing comes to the Vernon Performing Arts Centre.

It couldn’t be helped when last season, Vernon Performing Arts Centre audiences were left wanting when the special presentation of Golden Dragon Acrobat’s Cirque Ziva had to be cancelled.

The  reason? The acrobatic troupe had occurred unavoidable complications with international travel visas and American immigration.

However, the VPAC society is making up for the loss with its 12th annual birthday bash celebration, taking place at the centre Friday, Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.

That’s when the Shangri-La Chinese Acrobats, direct from the People’s Republic of China, will enter the building for the first time.

And don’t worry, this troupe already has their visas officially approved, said Erin Kennedy, VPAC artistic director.

Shangri-La has already made an impression, having taken the world by storm from New Zealand to Canada. The troupe is returning on their 34th North American tour and audiences should expect to be dazzled by their multi-faceted and multicultural production.

The show features dazzling acrobatic displays, formidable feats of daring and balance, explosive Kung Fu, brilliant costumes, and even a touch of Chinese comedy, said Shangri-La co-producer Cynthia Dyke-Hughes

“It really is a tour de force of tumbling, gymnastics, mind-over-matter feats, balancing, and really sheer fun,” she said. “The performers give 110 per cent when they’re on the stage and the reactions of the audience are amazing.”

Under the direction of Chinese acrobatic legends, the Hai Family, the company is said to flawlessly interpret the precision and grace of an art form honed by years of training and discipline.

The athletes start their training at a young age and perform more than just a series of stunts. Most of their feats demonstrate the achievement of perfection through finding harmony between mind and body – an ancient concept in the Orient, said Dyke-Hughes.

“There’s a real transference of joy from the performers to the audience,” she said. “It makes all the hard work worthwhile when the audience is enjoying the show and everyone leaves the theatre with a great feeling.”

Tickets for VPAC’s birthday bash with the Shangri-La Chinese Acrobats are $40 for adults, $37 for seniors, and $35 for students, available at the Ticket Seller box office: online at, or by phone at 250-549-SHOW (7469).


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