Combination of Chinese and Western Elements and Brilliant Interaction
——Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College Holds Grand Cultural Event Celebrating Global Confucius Institute Day

[Source]    Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College [Time]    2017-09-30 18:31:28 

On September 23rd, local time, the Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College held a variety of cultural activities to celebrate the Fourth Global Confucius Institute Day, during which performances such as Chinese and western musical instrument play, Dai dance, Mongolian dance, and Uygur dance were shown to the audience in turns. In addition, experience activities such as lion dance, traditional Chinese medicine demonstrations, Tai Chi, and Chinese calligraphy brought a Chinese culture feast to the teachers and students of the university and the local people.

Themed “Perceiving Chinese Folk Culture”, this year’s celebration aimed to promote the rich and diverse multi-ethnic culture of China through diverse means. Nicholas Steneck, Foreign Director of the Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College, and Jiang Xiaoping, Chinese Director, presided over the celebration.

The celebration kicked off with a lion dance named Two Lions Frolic into Fall and Gary Bechtel, Chief Executive of the Macon-Bibb County, attended the celebration and gave a speech to extend his thanks to the Confucius Institute for providing such a platform for experiencing Chinese culture and knowing more about China. Vivia Fowler, President of Wesleyan College, praised in her speech the contributions made by the working staff of the Confucius Institute to promoting Chinese teaching and Chinese culture locally and specially appreciated the leadership of Jiang Xiaoping in the past four years. Betty Jean Slater, Chairman of the National Culture Promotion Society, also extended best wishes to the activities when delivering a speech.

Lion dance performance

Dr. Fowler exalted Jiang Xiaoping for her work in the past four years and presented her with a bouquet.

In the follow-up performances, many wonderful songs and beautiful dances revealed the ethnic characteristics to their fullest. The Dai dance of Daughters and Rain of Dai presented the characteristics of the Dai nationality, with the dancing girls being swift, graceful, and as tender and soft as water, which resembles the beauty of Xishuangbanna. The Mongolian dance On the Horizon, performed by Wang Zhigang, a visiting scholar from the School of Music and Dance of Guangzhou University, showed the heroic spirit of the unfettered Mongolian men who dream of roaming freely around the vast lands. The Uygur dance of Blessing was hot and unrestrained, and the dancers danced trippingly with the audience on site, pushing the atmosphere to a new climax. The song Why Are the Flowers So Red adapted from a Tadzhikistan folk song was resonant and affectionate, and the bamboo dance of We Will Rock You performed by Central Georgia Vietnamese Baptist Church was so rhythmical that it brought down the house a second time.

The Dai dance Daughters and Rain of Dai

The chorus of Why Are All the Flowers So Red by teachers and students

The musical instrument play segment also brought about many surprises. Besides the percussion music play like the quartet of keyboard, guitar, bass and jazz drum, there was even a medley of eastern and western musical instrument plays orchestrated by pipa, erhu, guzheng, cucurbit flute, keyboard, guitar, bass, percussion instrument and viola. Classic songs such as On the Move, My Heart Will Go On, and Neo-Classicism brought the memories of the audience on those songs back to life and made them feel intoxicated.

Eastern and western musical instrument play

To fully demonstrate Chinese culture, the site of the celebration also became a resort of cultural experience. Rich cultural atmosphere could be felt everywhere as volunteers from the Confucius Institute wore all kinds of national costumes. In the sports area, participants engaged themselves happily in activities such as table tennis, badminton, tug-of-war, diabolo, rope skipping and shuttlecock kicking, and handiwork fans tried panda drawing, colored drawing of masks, and hand strap knitting. Zhao Hailei, Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at Augusta University, and a teacher Gao Jian introduced the traditional Chinese medicine to the audience in detail and helped them understand the principles of traditional Chinese medicine. On the scene, teachers from the Confucius Institute also performed lion dance and tea art, and taught Tai Chi and Chinese calligraphy to the participants.

Children experiencing Chinese calligraphy

A volunteer performing tea art

A volunteer showing a child how to knit hand ropes

Members of the dance troupe of the Confucius Institute, dressed in diverse national costumes, interacting with the audience on site via dances

A participant dancing with a volunteer dressed in panda costume

Jiang Xiaoping said that the Confucius Institute will constantly innovate forms and contents of the activities, thus contributing to the Global Confucius Institute Day with more vivid and with more cultural connotative activities and dramatically expanding cultural exchanges between the local people and the institute and that between the institute and other sister institutes.

A group photo of the working staff

On the very day of celebration, the Confucius Institute received a letter of congratulation from the U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson commending that the Confucius Institute Day is a great cultural event between China and the United States, which will be conducive to the cultural prosperity and economic development of Georgia State. He thanked the Confucius Institute at Wesleyan College for its dedication to bringing a unique cultural experience to the local people of Georgia.