Impression West Lake (Hangzhou)


One of five grand-scale, outdoor folk musicals to be co-directed by acclaimed filmmaker Zhang Yimou, known in the West for directing Hero and Raise the Red Lantern, Impression, West Lake (Yìnxiàng Xīhú, 印象西湖) is a spectacular sound, light, dance and acrobatic show.
As with Zhang’s other Impression shows (the others are in Yangshuo, Lijiang, Hainan and on Wuyi Shan in Fujian), this one focuses on a local legend, the “Legend of the White Snake” (Báishé Zhuàn, 白蛇传). The legend tells of a white snake demon who dreams of being a goddess. Spotting a young man by West Lake who she remembers saved her in a past life, she becomes a young woman but a monk who knows the woman’s secret casts the demon down from Leifeng Pagoda.
First performed in late 2007 and backed by a RMB 100 million investment from the local government, the entire show takes place on the famed West Lake itself, with the performance stage submerged just below the surface of the water.


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