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Reflecting on the amazing career of Jing Jing

Mr Xue Jing Jing, affectionately known at NICA as Jing Jing, retired from training recently. Jing Jing was a longstanding and highly valued member of the NICA community, having been with NICA since 1999.

Jing Jing grew up in China and graduated from the Acrobatic School of Shanghai in 1961. Upon graduating he became a principal performer with the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe and was admired as one of China’s best acrobats. He performed for 25 years with the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe, specialising in handstands and chairs. His circus highlights include performing for Former US Presidents Mr Richard Nixon and Mr Jimmy Carter, and the King of Cambodia.

In 1979 he began teaching performers in the troupe his advanced skills, which were highly regarded in China. During these years he trained student, Deng Baojing, to win the Championship of the 10th World Tomorrow Acrobatic Competition in Paris for his Juggling With Benches show. He also trained Deng Baojing to win Gold at The English Voyage Cup and Gold at The Stunt Programmes Competition in London.

In the 1980s Jing Jing became the instructor and coach of the troupe, and was responsible for designing training programs at the school. He conducted valuable research into acrobatic training theories publishing articles such as ‘How to Train Young Acrobats’, ‘Training of Handstand’ and ‘Reform in Acrobatic Training’ which contributed to improvements in acrobatic training programs in China.

In the 1990s he left China for Australia where he worked at NICA from its inception in 1999.

Diana Zhang, also a long time trainer at NICA, reflected on Jing Jing’s amazing career and dedication to circus training:

I first heard about Jing Jing when I was a little girl. I was a student at Shanghai Circus School, where we trained full time in circus/acrobatics and studied with a Senior Master Artist in Chinese Circus History. Jing Jing’s name always came up in our circus history subject as he was a leading performer of the Handstand Act in China.

His stories and amazing skills are such an inspiration to us all. I am very privileged to have had the chance to meet Jing Jing in Australia and work with him for the past few years. He is passionate about teaching his students and sharing his wisdom with others. Over the time he has been at NICA, we have all learnt something from him.

It will be very different without Jing Jing here: we are going to miss seeing him do his early morning exercise, after lunch
nap, and most of all we’ll miss him telling everyone off by calling us Lazy Donkeys (Lanlu).

A fond farewell to Jing Jing and a huge thank you from everyone at NICA.
 


Article added 19 Oct 2017

National Institute of Circus Arts

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