Today I went to the National Mall for the Annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival. This year the festival highlighted China and Kenya. I focused on the China portion of the festival. The first dance I saw was actually of a man dressed as a woman doing the traditional lantern dance; later in the program, he performed the male version of the dance with a female partner. The man is one of the foremost traditional dancers in China. Along with the lantern dance, performers also did dances that told the stories of flowers and trees. I also was lucky enough to see the end of the lion cart performance. The lion cart performance is dancing lion puppets controlled by a troop of 8 to 10 people. It was fun to watch, once I squeezed myself into the crowd.
|The Lions in the Lion Cart|
Since these performances were held in outdoor tents, it was a slightly difficult to meter through the camera for some photos. I mostly used either a 400 ISO or 800 ISO for the dancers with an aperture set at either f8.0 or f4.0. I varied the shutter speed to be able to catch some motion of the dancers but tried to stay between 1/80s and 1/200s. You can see all the pictures under my Folklife 2014 gallery.
|Man performing the Lantern Dance|
|Beginning of the Tree Dance|