THH2017 Feature: Tai Lihua’s Journey

National Headquarters  |  July 11, 2017

In 1976, a lively, vocal little girl was born in Yichang city, Hubei province, who would go on to inspire people around the world. At the age of two, Tai Lihua became ill, and due to an overdose of medicine, soon lost her ability to hear. She did not let this dampen her spirits, however; she had dreams and aspirations that she had no intention of abandoning:  she wished to perform on stage. Ms. Tai dedicated her time and efforts to practicing ceaselessly, feeling the music through vibrations, and striving to perfect her art, despite her hearing impairment.

At the age of 15, she became a member of the China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe  (CDPPAT). It is with the guidance of this group of talented and passionate individuals that she was able to truly shine, capturing the hearts of audiences with her grace and dedicated resolve – especially through her presentation of the piece, “The Soul of a Peacock.” Her skills soared through hard work and collaboration with her team, eventually becoming the choreographer and main performer in the dance musical “Butterfly Lovers,” which left the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in awe.

Ms. Tai Lihua excelled to the role of their lead dancer, and is currently the president and top creative mind of the world-renowned China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe.

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On May 25, 2005, Tai Lihua, Jiang Xintian, Huang Yangguang and the rest of CDPPAT with The Pope.
In 2007, Koichiro Matsuura, the Director-General of UNESCO designated the China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe as UNESCO Artist for Peace.
Tai Lihua and the performers of One-Thousand Hands Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva with Alfred Gusenbauer, Prime Minister of Austria, in June 2007.
In 2008, Tai Lihua, along with the China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe, undertook the art performances for opening and closing ceremonies of 2008 Summer Paralympics Games in Beijing.
In 2012, Tai Lihua accepted the Lions Clubs International "Humanitarian Award” on behalf of Mr. Deng Pufang, the leader, and CDPPAT.

It was during one of the CDPPAT’s performance events in 2006 that she first met Tzu Chi volunteers, remarking upon the love and compassion she felt, as if we are all one big family. From that point on, the CDPPAT has worked closely with our organization throughout our charity concerts, and each member resides deep within the hearts of our volunteers. Through our combined commitment, we have hosted additional performances in 2010, 2016, and now in 2017 as well.

Tzu Chi has a special place in my heart. We share a bond with Tzu Chi that is as Master Cheng Yen described, like a never ending source of spring water… As far as their eyes can see, their feet can walk, and their strength could reach, [Tzu Chi’s] silhouettes can be seen with hands outreached, helping people.

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