Yang Yuhuan was a famous dancer in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). She was very beautiful. She received good education when she was a child and could play many kinds of musical instruments. Yang Yuhuan was especially good at dancing and was an excellent dancer.
Due to her beauty and excellent dance skills, Tang Emperor Minghuang fell in love with Yang Yuhuan and made her a high-ranking imperial concubine. Yang Yuhuan was especially good at dancingNishangyuyi(The Dance in Feathery Clothing). There were many beautiful stories about its origin. One of them says that the work was secretly learned by Tang Emperor Minghuang from the Palace in the Moon. This manifested the love and praise of the people who had seen it.
The great Tang poet Bai Juyi gave it a more detailed description in his famous articleSong to the Dance in Feathery Clothing, which read: "The light rotation resembles the flying snowflakes, and rapid advance is like a startled dragon. The drooping hands are frail and subtle like budding poplar twigs, and the tilting dancing dresses rise up like white clouds. Beneath misty eyebrows the wandering eyes carry forth enchanting charms, and the long sleeves dancing up and down in the wind are full of feelings. It must be Madame Shangyuan (a Taoist goddess) who called over the fairy E Luhua, and the Queen Mother of the West who bids farewell to the fairy Xu Feiqiong. "
Yang Yuhuan was so beautiful and she danced so well that emperor loved her very much. The emperor lost interest in governing the country and, as a result, the government became corrupt. A general conspired a coup calledtheAn Lushan-Shi Siming Rebellion in Chinese history. Finally, the emperor was forced to kill Yang Yuhuan.