World Arts West
SF Ethnic Dance Festival


Jenny Fong

Guan-Shan Wang (of YaoYong Dance)
First Appearance in SF EDF:

Jenny Fong began her dance training when she was six years old, studying under Mr. Yong Yao and Mrs. Guan-Shan Wang, at YaoYong Dance in San Jose. As an undergraduate at UC Davis, Jenny taught Chinese dance to members of the Davis community as well as the Chinese Dance and Arts Club, where she served as president until she graduated in 2010. She now holds B.S. degrees in both Clinical Nutrition and Psychology.


Jenny FongTITLE: Salp’uri
Jenny Fong

Jenny Fong presents a traditional Korean solo dance: Salp’uri. This performance is a concert form of the dance, a choreography from Chinese people of Korean descent. The dance expresses the sorrow of human relationships and separations, the bitterness of unsatisfied desire. The dancer begins slowly and then gains speed and intensity as her emotions rise. She moves continuously, mirroring the eternally revolving yin and yang, darkness and light, and she leads each step with the heel, holding her body in check, creating a thousand fluid lines in circular paths and turns. The dress is a modernized hanbok, the traditional Korean and Korean Chinese dress, with billowing skirt and short jacket vest. As a vestige of the Salp’uri’s shamanistic roots, a white silk scarf represents the soul’s road to the spirit world.

In Korea, Salp’uri is a beloved form, a dance of spiritual cleansing, designated a “national intangible heritage”. It embodies the essence of Korean dance, expressing life’s heavier aspects with an inner lightness. The form is closely tied to the centuries-old indigenous religion (still very much alive in Korea) danced by Korean shamans to help souls pass to the spirit world. The dance form arrived in China with millions of Korean immigrants escaping famine and political repression in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Today over two million Chinese of Korean descent live in China, partly in the northeastern Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture. China preserves Salp’uri as a Chinese minority dance, a beautiful traditional art.

In Korea, the concert form of Salp’uri is often attributed to 1930’s choreographer Han Song-jun in Seoul. This Korean Chinese version was first performed and choreographed for China’s National (2009) Taoli Cup Competition by the Minzu University of China. Jenny Fong studied the form under Mrs. Guan-Shan Wang at YaoYong Dance in San Jose, CA.

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