“Chinese Bridge” for the World & “Chinese Dream” for Students!
The “Chinese Bridge” Competition Embraces New Form and Exciting Upgrade

[Source]    Confucius Institute Headquarters [Time]    2020-06-04 15:38:40 
 

Editor's Note

First launched in 2002, the “Chinese Bridge” Competition has attracted nearly 1.5 million college and high school students from 154 countries to actively participate in overseas preliminaries, among which more than 6,500 outstanding contestants have participated in the finals in China. Every year, more than 100 million people watch the competitions at home and abroad.

The “Chinese Bridge” Competition includes the “Chinese Bridge” - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students, Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign Secondary School Students, and Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreigners Across the Globe. Regarded as the “Olympics” of the international Chinese education, the “Chinese Bridge” Competition has already become an international event appealing to the close attention and active participation of Chinese learners across the world.

Affected by the epidemic this year, the previous offline matches couldn’t be carried out normally. Therefore, for the first time, the “Chinese Bridge” Competition was conducted online, providing a platform for Chinese lovers from all over the world to fully display themselves.

Innovative Competition Form Ensures Smooth Online Finals

On June 1st, local time, the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Nigeria was held online for the first time.

The competition was divided into four parts: Drawing Lots to Answer Questions, Impromptu Questions & Answers, Prepared Speech and Talent Show. The nine finalists demonstrated a high proficiency of Chinese and deep understanding as well as love of Chinese culture. Their fluent Chinese expression, rich knowledge structure, marvelous talent shows and excellent competition style impressed the judges tremendously.

Earlier, the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Dominica was broadcast live online. Although the players could not “fight” face to face, they were enthusiastic and active in their preparation and rehearsal under the guidance of teachers.

The theme of this year's competition is “one world, one family”. The contestants competed online in three stages: Self-Introduction, Keynote Speech and Talent Show, and submitted their own videos of the contest afterwards. The contestants spoke passionately of their love for Chinese, shared the joy of learning, and also expressed their yearning for China.

The contestants also displayed a variety of talent shows, including Poetry Recitation, Singing of Chinese Songs, Chinese Dance Performances, Chinese Calligraphy and Tea Art Shows. Contestant Bedloe presented his calligraphy works in front of the camera. He spread the Chinese art paper, waving the brush and writing Chinese characters to express his love for Chinese. Bai Ruyue performed a Chinese song “The Ordinary Angel” and before the performance, she expressed emotionally: “Many people's lives have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. I hope we can tide over the difficulties together soon.”

After strict evaluation of the judges, Bai Ruyue from the Confucius Institute of Santo Domingo University of Technology won the first prize. “Learning Chinese and exploring Chinese culture not only bring me endless surprises, but also give me opportunities to grow up,” she said, “Joining the competition today is the first step to fulfill my dream, and I hope I can win the privilege to study Chinese in China. ”

So far, many competition areas including Thailand, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, the Netherlands and South Africa have also completed their competitions online. The online competitions have gained wide applause among foreign students: “the competitions have been moved online, allowing us to take part in the competitions as usual. This innovative form is not limited by time and space, which is very convenient.”

Passionate Contestants Presented Brilliant Performances in the Competition

Due to the continuous spread of the pandemic, many countries have currently completed their innovative transformation of competitions from offline to online. Although the competition has been transferred to the online platform, the students' love for Chinese and their enthusiasm for participating in the competition could never be stopped. In fact, many competition areas have generated greater attention than ever before, with the performances of all contestants being remarkably brilliant.

On June 3rd, local time, the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Armenia and the final of the 13th “Chinese Bridge” - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign Secondary School Students in Armenia were held online. 5 college students and 6 secondary school students entered the finals after several rounds of selection. The 5 college students were from Armenia’s universities including Yerevan National University, Slavic University and Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences, and the 6 secondary school students were from schools including 29 Middle School, China-Armenia Friendship School and French School, etc.

Tian Er’long, Chinese ambassador to Armenia, delivered a speech at the opening ceremony. He said: “Even during the epidemic isolation period, everyone is continuing learning Chinese and conscientiously preparing for the “Chinese Bridge” Competition at home. This fully demonstrates their love for the Chinese language and Chinese culture and their firm confidence in overcoming difficulties. When the epidemic is over, our two countries will welcome new development opportunities and need more talents proficient in language and culture and good at communication.

Language is the bridge of communication while culture acts as the link of communication. State-to-state relations thrive when there is friendship between the peoples. And such friendship grows out of close interactions between the peoples. I hope you will maintain your confidence in learning Chinese well, I wish all the contestants display their highest performances, and I wish the competition a complete success! ”

The finals consist of four parts: Written Test of Chinese Cultural Knowledge, Talent Show, Chinese Speech and Impromptu Question and Answer session. Among them, the Written Test of Chinese Cultural Knowledge had already been held online through ZOOM cloud video conference on May 27th. In the Talent Show, the contestants showed off their remarkable talents in a variety of ways.

Dressed in traditional Chinese costumes, they expressed their love for Chinese and Chinese culture through beautiful and touching Chinese folk dances, melodious tone of Chinese National Musical Instruments, deep and long Chinese folk songs, and simple and elegant Chinese paintings. They also explored their creativity by playing Chinese songs with western musical instruments, performing Chinese Talk Shows, Tongue Twisters, Stand-up Crosstalk, the Face off in Sichuan Opera, and many other shows.

During the keynote speech session, the contestants delivered speeches centering around the themes of “Chinese Bridge” Competition and “one world, one family”. The contestants Shared stories about their affinity with Chinese, their tenacious journey in learning Chinese, their longing for China and their passion for the Chinese language. The majority of the contestants could deliver the Prepared Speech and Impromptu Question and Answer session with standard Mandarin pronunciation and clear articulation.

In the end, Artyom Muradyan from the French School and Lida Papikyan from the Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences won the laurels of the secondary school and college students respectively.

Karine Harutyunyan, President of Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences, said the “Chinese Bridge” Competition was a great success with its innovative form, and she sincerely congratulated the contestants on their good results!

Almost at the same time, the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” - Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Northern Macedonia Division and the final of the 13th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign Secondary School Students Macedonia were held online by the Confucius Institute at Sscyril and Methodius University in Skopje.

In his speech, Nikola Jankulovski, President of Sscyril and Methodius University in Skopje, said that Sscyril and Methodius University has maintained a long-term friendly and close cooperation with China’s Southwest University of Finance and Economics. The Confucius Institute established by both sides has played an irreplaceable role in Chinese education in North Macedonia, providing students in North Macedonia with the opportunity to learn Chinese and also set up a bridge to connect them with China.

The students were divided into three groups in accordance with age, including college students group, secondary school students group and primary school students group; The competition was divided into three parts, including Written Test, Keynote Speech and Chinese Talent Show.

The themes of the Keynote Speech were “one world, one family”, “Chinese Bridge” Competition and Happy Chinese, Happy Childhood. Each group of contestants shared their experiences in learning Chinese, elaborated their views and understandings of China and Chinese culture, and expressed their love and enthusiasm for Chinese language. Their beautiful Chinese writing and fluent Chinese expressions were highly recognized by the judges.

After fierce competition, Konstantina Sarvanoska, Nela Janeva and Victoria Mihajlova won the first place in the college group, secondary school group and primary school group respectively.

Through the competition, the students tested their Chinese proficiency, got trained both in their languages and willpower, and passed on the power of love and hope.

Why Participating in the “Chinese Bridge”? People Have Their Say…

Every year, the “Chinese Bridge” Competition attracts many Chinese lovers from all over the world. They make speeches in Chinese, show their talents, and talk about their love of Chinese on the stage to the fullest.

On May 30th, the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Ho Chi Minh Division was held in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. 26 students from 12 universities in the southern provinces and cities of Vietnam participated in the contest. After fierce competition, Wuruan Qiongru from Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh City won the championship.

Wu said after the contest that she came into contact with the Chinese language by chance, but has been deeply attracted by the charm of the language since she started learning it. “In the future, I will redouble my efforts to learn Chinese and have a deeper understanding of Chinese culture. I hope to engage in work related to Vietnam-China friendship and promote cultural exchanges between the two countries after graduation.”

Fan Jinxia, Vice-President of Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh City, said in his speech before the competition that in recent years the cooperation between the two countries in the fields of economy, trade, education, culture, tourism and other fields has been continuously strengthened, and the “Chinese Bridge” Competition is conducive to enhancing students' understanding of the Chinese language and Chinese culture.

In Australia, the preliminary of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Sydney Division also came to a successful close. Affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the competition was conducted by submitting video works. The fluent Chinese, sincere feelings and exquisite talents of the contestants won high praise from the judges.

As to why they want to learn Chinese and participate in the “Chinese Bridge” Competition, some contestants said that languages deepen the communication between different countries, while others said that they should not only learn the language, but also understand the culture behind the language, and still others said the most important thing for the “Big Family” is to understand each other.

It is worth mentioning that Emma Pinn, a student from Macquarie University, was not qualified to take part in the competition due to her overage. However, this could never stop her love for Chinese language and culture. Though she could not get the ranking, she still performed her exquisitely prepared works, especially her wonderful rendition of the Chinese song “Chengdu”, which was graceful and intoxicating.

After the final of the 19th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in Armenian Division, the contestants expressed their love for Chinese language and their gratitude to the Chinese teachers by phone and WeChat.

“My dream is to become a diplomat and build a bridge of friendship for China-Armenia in Chinese,” said Jiang Er’jie, a secondary school student. Thanks to the “Chinese Bridge” Competition, this helped me set the first step on the road to success.”

“The “Chinese Bridge” Competition held during this special period gives us the opportunity to show ourselves and grow up,” said contestant Anna.

“Learning Chinese and participating in the “Chinese Bridge” Competition has not only enabled me to make friends with Chinese lovers from all over the world, but also given me a clear understanding of my future development plan,” said Ruslan, the global champion of the 17th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students. “I hope every Chinese lover can gain a better self in the process of learning Chinese. “

Shi Yu, the global champion of the 18th “Chinese Bridge” Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students, also said that learning Chinese has ushered her to a turning point in her life, and participating in the competition has brought her many opportunities. “I hope everyone can realize his or her dream by learning Chinese,” she said.