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Chinese Consulate Kolkata Holds Happy Spring Festival Performances
2018/02/14

The Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Kolkata presented an evening of Chinese artistic performances to celebrate the Chinese Spring Festival at Kala Mandir, Kolkata on 12 February 2018.

The performances as presented by the artistic troupe from Guangxi, China, attracted about 1200 people to watch, including such guests of honor as Mr. Kuldip Singh Sheoran, Inspector General and Commander of Indian Coast Guard Region (NE), Mr. Atul Joshi, Deputy Inspector General and Chief Staff Officer (Operations and Aviation) of Indian Coast Guard Region (NE); Prof. Maria Fernandes, Member of West Bengal Commission for Woman and Senior Vice President of the West Bengal TMC Minority Commission, Dr. Soma Bandyopadhyay, Director of the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Dr. Avijit Banerjee, Head of Cheena Bhavana of Visva Bharati University as well as people from government, business community, cultural and educational sectors, media, students and teachers of schools and universities, members of the overseas Chinese community and local Chinese enterprises, Chinese volunteer teachers, residents at Salt Lake City, BMC, and all the staff with the consulate.

Before the performances, Consul General Ma Zhanwu thanked the audience for their presence and sent to them the best wishes for the Chinese New Year, which is the Year of Dog. Mr. Ma then welcomed Mr. Sheoran on the stage and introduced him as a 'great friend' and went on to tell the audience how a week back Commander Sheoran and his colleagues saved the life of a critically sick crew member of a Chinese ship anchored 120 KM away from the Port Haldia. He then welcomed Prof. Fernandes on the stage and introduced her as a person who has been working closely with the consulate and helping people belonging to the Chinese community living in Kolkata. She has been helping the young Chinese people living in Tangra area of the city.

Stating that we were still in the Year of Roster and in just four-days it would be the Year of Dog Mr. Ma went on to explain to the audience what Chinese Spring Festival is all about. He said there is the 12-year cycle in the Chinese calendar, with the years represented by 12 different animals respectively, and next year will be the Year of Dog. Explaining how this is the most important festival in China and to help the local audience feel the connect, Mr. Ma compared it with Durga Puja in West Bengal and Holi in other parts of India. Mr. Ma then said that people in China celebrate this festival with good food, beautiful decorations including the famous Chinese lanterns, and great cultural performances. Talking about merrymaking during the Spring Festival in China Mr. Ma elucidated on how people in China indulge in partying and how the parties progress from one household to another and hosts shower gifts on their guests. Sometimes the gifts can be expensive things like emeralds depending on the status of the host. The progressive partying is followed by the Dragon Dance and Lion Dance on the streets. There is also a lot of playing of fireworks and fire crackers.

Talking about the performances that were about to start, Mr. Ma stated that the performers were from the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of China, with its residents being from the Zhuang and other ethnic ethic groups, and an autonomous region in China is like a province in China or a state in India. He told the audience that Guangxi is very rich in culture and has a long history. Mr. Ma then explained how this region in China is well-known for its scenic beauty. Talking about the beautiful mountains of Guilin located in Guangxi, Mr. Ma said in China it is said that if you have seen the mountains in Guilin, you do not need to see any other mountain. The mountains there look as if they had grown-up straight from the ground. He encouraged the audience to go and explore the beautiful region.

Stating that Guangxi is the only coastal province in China which is home to ethnic minorities, Mr. Ma said that the girls from this region are very good at singing and dancing and the audience will soon get to see that on stage.

Talking about the artists who are performing in the cultural program Mr. Ma said that they were not only well-known artists of China but had given performances in Europe and America and won much applause.

The Consul General also expressed his appreciation to the State Government of West Bengal, the friends from all walks of life in the State, as well as the government agencies of Guangxi, for their support and facilitation of the performances.

The guests of honors expressed appreciation to the Chinese Consulate General for holding the Happy Spring Festival activities, and said that they welcome and are thankful to the artists from Guangxi.

The Chinese artists performed dances of "New Year's Greeting", "Flowers Bloom in the Rain" and "Blooming Jasmines", acrobatic shows of "Spinning Blankets", "Magic Cube" and "Dreams of Feather-man (Handstand Skills)", instrumental ensemble "Five Kinds of National Music" by renowned performer Huang Yong, magic show "Mulan", and some other shows, which demonstrated in different ways the charm of the traditional and folk Chinese arts and culture.

The performances fascinated the audience, who applauded and cheered continuously. They were mesmerized by each of the shows, including the "Thousand-hands Bodhisattva", a dance performance inspired by the Bodhisattva with thousand hands and thousand eyes where the thousand hands represent vast amount of compassion and the thousand eyes represents the wisdom.

Towards the end of the show, large numbers of the audience came to the stage to express their admiration to the Chinese artists and expressed their appreciation of the Chinese arts and culture. Many Indian friends also sent messages to or telephoned the Consulate to convey their congratulations on the success of the performances.

Consul General Ma and other guests of honor went on to the stage to present bouquets to the artists towards the end of the shows, and congratulated them on the outstanding presentation.

Times of India, the Telegraph, Indian Express, The Statesman, PTI and other news agencies sent reporters to cover the event.

 

Later, Consul General Ma met with all the artists from Guangxi at his residence on 13 February 2018.

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