Blend of bikinis and Chinese opera stirs debate
BEIJING (AP) - A stage performance by bikini-clad women wearing headpieces styled after traditional Peking Opera has sparked debate in China after photos were made public this week, highlighting divided views on how to preserve the country's traditions.
Organisers of the Miss Bikini International Committee - which was responsible for the show staged in April to promote an upcoming bikini competition - defend the use of Chinese opera elements as a bold artistic attempt.
"We are only adding small elements of the opera to fit the Eastern style, and we are just adding Chinese traditional cultural elements on the stage in order to attract audience," said Ms Li Jinkun, general manager of Beijing Beauty Cultural Development Co. Ltd., which organises the bikini contests. "Our goal was to let the audience have a fresh and new feeling."
Supporters say such experiments should be tolerated in commercial endeavors, but opponents say the sexiness of bikinis insults the traditional art form, which typically appeals to older people.