Stunning facts of nimbleness, strength, and flexibility will take center stage at the Gallo Center for the Arts when the Peking Acrobats tumble into town.
The celebrated group of acrobats, jugglers, tumblers, cyclists, and contortionists will perform at 2 p.m. Jan. 19.
The group’s repertoire of seemingly gravity-defying stunts include balancing atop stacked chairs, constructing a human pyramid on a bicycle, and taking plate spinning to a completely new level. The stunts are accompanied live musicians playing traditional Chinese instruments.
Acrobatics is rooted in ancient Chinese culture. According to Fu Qifeng, author of “Chinese Acrobatics Through the Ages,” acrobatics originated from the people's daily life, drawing from their experiences in work, war, and sacrificial rites. During the Warring States Period, acrobatics became widespread and it was believed that practicing acrobatics could steal people's will, along with increasing physical strength and accurate movements.
The Peking Acrobats debuted in the West in 1986 and has been touring regularly ever since. The troupe is made up of more than two dozen performers, some of whom began training at five years of age.
Tickets are $15 to $45. Tickets can be purchased online at www.galloarts.org, by calling 338-2100, or from the Gallo Center ticket office at 1000 I St. in downtown Modesto.