Image China: Xuanzang's Pilgrimage

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China Performing Arts Agency will bring the US premiere of Xuanzang’s Pilgrimage to The Kennedy Center Opera House in January 2019. Performed by the China National Traditional Orchestra (CNTO), the production is China’s first traditional concert drama. It tells the story of the Buddhist monk Xuanzang (602-664), who travelled the length of the Silk Road across China on a pilgrimage to India.

Xuanzang’s 17-year journey was driven by his desire to discover religious texts that had not yet come from India to China. The story is brought to life with an 80-piece traditional Chinese orchestra, 24 featured performers and elaborate costumes.

The production showcases the diverse yet connected cultures found along the legendary Silk Road, combining music from China's Han, Uyghur, Kazak Tajik and other ethnic groups, and features exotic instruments such as the zither, Chinese harp, dulcimer and eagle flute.

Combining elements of Chinese and Indian heritage to tell this international story, Xuanzang’s Pilgrimage is a large-scale multimedia experience from one of China’s most notable cultural organizations. Live musicians, striking, colorful design, stunning projections and an epic story combine to make this an unforgettable event for audience members.

Xuanzang’s Pilgrimage is part of Image China, a high-level cultural exchange program presented by China Arts and Entertainment Group that introduces traditional and contemporary Chinese performing arts to audiences around the world.

The presenter, China Performing Arts Agency, is part of China Arts and Entertainment Group, and is associated with the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

Performance Timing: Part One - 60 min.; Intermission - 20 min.; Part Two - 50 min.

Street Address

2700 F Street NW
Washington, DC 20566


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