Fun With Chinese, Hope Of Success
Review of the 8th "Chinese Bridge" Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Student

[Source]    Hanban [Time]    2009-09-08 14:06:52 

It is a bridge to culture, to the soul, to the ideal, and to harmony. The bridge is based on the splendid and profound Chinese culture and ornamented with the ancient and graceful Chinese language. Over the bridge cross inter national college students who are curious and ambitious about Chinese culture.

“My Chinese name is Xiao Rufeng, literally meaning ‘as unrestrained as the wind’.” Thus opened the self-introduction of Florent Noe, a handsome French lad. He aspired to be as chivalrous as Xiao Feng, the hero of Dragon Oath, a famous Chinese swordsman fiction. At the Chinese Bridge competition this year, Florent’s wish came true. He demonstrated his proficiency in both Chinese language and Chinese kung fu. Moreover, he was lucky enough to be apprenticed to a veteran martial artist.

The scorching July found 112 contestants from 76 zones in 60 countries shortlisted from the preliminary contests for the semifinals and finals of the 8th “Chi- nese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students sponsored by Hanban in Changsha, China. These youths of different countries and races flew to China from all corners of the world to attend the event that transcends both time and space.

Preliminary Selection Across The World

The sugar-coated haws at the stall, either on sticks or in piles, are glossy and shining… There, there! Even potatoes and quail's eggs are coated with sugar on the stick. It is a riot of color, a world of balls, a sea of sticks…”

Can you imagine that this fluent, vivid, and enthusiastic speech was not uttered by a Chinese tour guide or broadcaster, but by a graduate from South Korea’s Seoul National University? This happened at the preliminary contest in South Korea when Han Ruiying, one of the contestants, delivered a speech titled “My First Taste of Sugar-Coated Haws”. It is a vivid narration of her experience at the fair in Haiyun Temple of Qingdao last year.

The 8th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students, sponsored by Hanban and hosted by Hunan Satellite TV station from March to June, attracted more than ten thousand college students from outside China. On the theme of “Fun with Chinese, Hope of Success”, they made time-limited speeches, answered questions about Chinese culture and displayed their arts in the intense preliminary compeition.

They sang Chinese folk songs with emotion, played the zither with grace, practiced the Tai Chi sword dance with elegance, rapped and danced dynamically, demonstrated their ability in different dialects, and emulated famous Chinese comedians with great humor. They presented a perfect combination of the classic and the modern, sparkling and enlivening the contest with their wit. “Astonishing, amazing and astounding!” All the judges were very impressed by the contestants’ fervent enthusiasm!

When Han Ruiying, who came in first at the preliminary in South Korea, was shortlisted for the semi-finals and finals in Changsha to be held in July, she shouted in excitement: “China, wait for me!”

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