Wanshan Village is located in Qingyang City of northwest China’s Henan Province. As a strategically important location with roads extending in all directions, the village was developed as a military outpost in ancient China. The old village consists of five communities named by their locations, among which the Southern Community is the cradle of the so-called “burning sedan on stilts.”
The practice is said to have originated during the Tang and Song dynasties (dates) when locals celebrated the Spring Festival with performances involving dancing on stilts and carrying bridal sedan-chairs.
The custom developed further during the Ming Dynasty (date) when Zhu Zaiyu, an imperial prince, abandoned his title and retired near Wanshan Village. He found that the folk artists there ranked at the bottom of the social structure, and feeling sorry for them, helped create a new art which combined stilts dancing with carrying the bridal sedan-chair.
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