Beating Gongs and Drums and Dancing Yangge to Celebrate Spring Festival with Friends Across World — Confucius Institute at University at Albany, State University of New York Holds 2019 Spring Festival Celebration

[Source]    Confucius Institute at the University at Albany, State University of New York, USA [Time]    2019-02-23 17:33:03 

On February 2nd, local time, the Confucius Institute at the University at Albany, State University of New York (UAlbany Confucius Institute) held a celebration of the 2019 Spring Festival at the Center Ballroom. Paul Tonko, Congressman of the US and Havey Charles, Vice Provost of the University at Albany attended the celebration upon invitation. More than 1,000 people, including teachers and students from UAlbany and other local universities, overseas Chinese, international students and community residents, gathered to celebrate the Chinese New Year.

In his speech, Paul Tonko extended his Spring Festival greetings to the guests and demonstrated his love for Chinese culture as well as his strong interests in traditional Chinese festivals. He said that UAlbany Confucius Institute has made great contributions to Albany’s cultural diversity and the rich social lifestyle of local communities in the State of New York, enabling the American people to gain sound and better understanding of China, for which he expressed his gratitude.

Paul Tonko delivering a speech

In his speech, Harvey Charles acknowledged and thanked the Confucius Institute for its fruitful work in the previous year for the University and the community. He said that such traditional Chinese cultural activities organized by the Confucius Institute provided strong support for Albany’s core internationalization strategy and helped people to better understand different cultures and societies.

Harvey Charles delivering a speech

Cheerful sound of gongs and drums and the fascinating dragon dance kicked off the theatrical performance. The children and parents of the Chinese Community Centre New York Chinese School (CCC New York Chinese School) first brought performance “Counting Stars” to the audience, which fully presented the warmth brought by the happiness and contentment of a family reunion. Other performance such as enthusiastic chorus “Little Running River” and “Happy Gathering” by the local community in State of New York, the classical singing solo “Without You, the Flower Won’t Bloom” by the music teacher of the Confucius Institute and her folk music “Longing” in collaboration with Clarke University graduate student Shuai Lige, and erhu solo “Battle Steeds Galloping Ahead”, impressed the audience with their mastery and won a round of applause.

Performance of waist drum team

Performance of folk music

With children’s joyful performance “Seaweed Dance”, the “2019 Chinese New Year Fair” session began. Such 15 cultural booths regarding tea art, Spring Festival couplet writing, paper-cutting for window decoration, facial makeup painting of traditional Chinese opera, guessing lantern riddles and Chinese knot weaving were splendid and brilliant. On top of that, interesting games such as ring-toss, shuttlecock kicking, clip marbles and Chinese ring puzzle also captured people’s attention. The UAlbany Campus Center Ballroom was alive with excitement and laughter. At the end of the event, participants also tried traditional Chinese food together.

The scene of “2019 Chinese New Year Fair”

Staff of UAlbany Confucius Institute

Overseas Chinese attending the fair observed: “Every year, the Spring Festival activities of Confucius Institute are unique, making Chinese and the students far away from home sense family-like warmth. It has become the most anticipated event for local Chinese and the public every year!”