2007 Honorary Fellow
Shu Qiao studied dance at the Central Academy of Drama from 1951 to 1953. Upon graduation, she joined the Xin An Touring Company, now called Shanghai Music Conservatory, and performed roles such as Chen Xiang in The Lotus Lantern; Chang E in Hou Yi and Chang E (a Chinese legend); the Girl Weaver in The Cowherd and the Girl Weaver (a Chinese legendary love story); etc. Shu Qiao rose to fame in the 1960s for her role as Zhou Xiu-ying in the Chinese national dance drama The Dagger Society.
She created many experimental dance dramas in Shanghai including the large scale dance dramas: The Flight to the Moon; Yue Fe; The Shining Red Star; The Everlasting-regret (a famous Chinese poem written by poet Bai Ju-yi of the Tang Dynasty); and Hua Pi (ghost under a beauty’s skin). She is considered one of the most prolific choreographers in contemporary Chinese dance history.
As Hong Kong Dance Company’s longest serving Artistic Director – eight years from 1986 to 1994, Shu Qiao continuously experimented with the creative methodology of dance dramas and consciously used literature from Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan to create many new large scale Chinese dance dramas. Her most wellknown works include: Rouge; Jade Love; Red Snow; Yellow Earth; When the Dream Fades; San Mao; The Sixth Dalai Lama; and The Rite of Youth. In total she produced more than 20 major works for the Company as well as numerous shorter dance pieces. Shu Qiao’s choreography probes deep into one’s inner world and she excells in combining elements of Chinese dance movement vocabulary with contemporary dance choreographic methodologies. Her extensive choreographic cannon has won her high acclaim by dance devotees both in Hong Kong and Mainland China.
The Hong Kong based The New Evening Post invited Shu Qiao to be their columnist for many years. She was also a columnist for the Shanghai Wen Wei Po’s Pen column and has written for numerous magazines including Dance, and Fine Art, Film, Literature.
Shu Qiao was the Vice Chairman of the Fifth and Sixth China Dance Artists Association and a National Committee Member of the China Federation of Literary Artists from 1980 to 1998. She is currently the Advisor of the China Dance Artists Association, as well as Guest Professor of both the Beijing Dance Academy and the Shanghai Theatre Academy.