This year has been a busy and eventful one with many students from all around the world and China coming to train and also with the school being honored with invitations for many different performances, conferences, competitions, and international teaching opportunities. The year began in January with Master Yuan returning to the school from his month long trip to America.
During Master Yuan’s time in America he had the unique opportunity to get a feel for American life as well as an understanding of the sincere interest that American people have in learning more about Wudang kung fu. During Master Yuan’s time in America, he was invited to teach students of the Bullis School in the Washington, DC area and was also given the prestigious opportunity to give a lecture at the Library of Congress. As a result of the successes of Master Yuan’s time in America, those organizing each event showed great interest in having him return to continue teaching and lecturing in the future.
In May, the inaugural meeting of the Wudang San Feng Pai (Sect) Union Organizing Committee took place. We also celebrated the birthday of our Grandmaster, Zhong Yun Long, on this day. The day began with a meeting led by Grandmaster Zhong, some of his kung fu brothers, and Master Yuan. Most disciples of San Feng Sect’s 15th generation as well as some of the 16th generation disciples were in attendance. After the adjourning of the meeting, a large lunch was held in honor of Grandmaster Zhong’s birthday, followed later that night with a performance by some of Master Yuan’s elder students. During May, students of both the Chinese and foreign traditional classes took part in constructing a new training area at the school. In June, we traveled to 五龙宫(Wu Long Gong) to visit. We stayed the night in the temple and then set out early next morning for the long hike down from Wu Long Gong and then up to 紫霄宫(Zi Xiao Gong). We followed the same paths that Master Yuan had been traversing 20 years ago as a young monk in the temple. June 30th also marked the release of The Karate Kid, which Master Yuan has a small cameo appearance in. A large group of students traveled to Shi Yan with Master Yuan for a viewing of the movie. During Master Yuan’s part of the movie, all of the students in the audience roared with applause and cheering. In the middle of August, Master Yuan was contacted about having a group of 10 students from the foreigners’ traditional class travel to Beijing for four days to do a performance on stage with Jackie Chan for the opening ceremony of the first ever Sport Accord Combat Games. What everyone thought was going to only be a four day trip turned out to be a trip of more than two weeks, which no one was prepared for. Despite this, everyone trained hard and performed professionally alongside a group of foreigners from Shaolin. The group made it back to Wudang just in time to celebrate the one year anniversary of the beginning of the foreigners’ traditional class on September 1st. Those who organized the performance in Beijing were so impressed that not one week later, the traditional class as well as some members from the Yang Shen class were soon requested to join another performance alongside Jackie Chan. This time in Shi Yan for the opening ceremony of the Fourth World Traditional Wushu Competition. A group of 20 students took part in the opening ceremony and 5 members of the academy also competed. Master Yuan’s kung fu brother, Master Wang Zhi Qiang, a long standing teacher and presence at the academy took first place and received a gold medal for his Monk Spade and Master Yuan’s student, Yuan Yi Hui took first place and gold medal for his Da Dao and a silver medal for his Dragon form. The year has come to a close and the cold weather is making sure that everyone is training hard to stay warm! On December 10th Master Yuan left for a month and a half long trip through Europe. During his travels, he will be visiting Romania, The Czech Republic, Germany, and Scotland. In Each country he will be leading some seminar classes, teaching lectures, and doing some leisurely travel to learn more about Europe and its people. The next update won’t be until after the Chinese New Year, we hope that you can handle the wait! Below you will find pictures of all of the events of the past year. Remember to keep checking the website for news and updates and also to have a look at http://www.taoistkungfu.com for news and updates from the foreigners’ traditional class. All of us here at Master Yuan’s school sincerely hope that you have a wonderful, joyous, and safe holiday season and that we will see you here in Wudang in the near future!