Cultural exchanges help promote ties
Updated: 2012-04-30 07:58
By Zhu Linyong (China Daily)
"Cultural exchanges between China and Russia have reached an unprecedented height in recent years," said Yang Song, Europe and Asia division chief of the Liaison Office of the Ministry of Culture.
"A series of intercultural events have greatly helped promote mutual understanding, and bring Chinese and Russians closer."
The first Sino-Russian cultural cooperation agreement was signed in 1992 in Beijing, and has served as a framework for further exchanges and cooperation in arts and culture.
Russian children look at traditional embroidery by Chinese artists during the Chinese Cultural Festival in Moscow in 2010. [Lu Jinbo / Xinhua]
The past two decades have witnessed the signing and implementation of eight Sino-Russian cultural exchange agreements under the framework.
The currently functioning cultural exchange program is based on the Sino-Russian cooperative plan for 2011-2013, jointly formulated by ministries from the two countries.
In November 2000, the two sides established a vice-premier-level commission, under which are four subcommissions, handling cooperation in education, culture, sports and public health. The subcommissions have proven to be an effective platform and channel for bilateral cultural exchanges.
In recent years, the two countries staged a number of influential, large-scale intercultural exchange events, under the State-level cooperative framework.
In 2006 and 2007, Year of China in Russia and Year of Russia in China were held.
Under the framework of Year of China and Year of Russia, the countries' cultural ministries held hundreds of cultural exchange activities, involving more than 3,000 art and cultural professionals.
In July 2008, a Russian Cultural Festival was held in Beijing as part of the official outreach programs for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, ushering in a new era of regular and massive Sino-Russian cultural exchanges.
"Russian culture and arts have deeply influenced a generation of Chinese people," says Zhao Hong, deputy manager of XDR Culture and Communication, which has brought some Russian ballet troupes and dance ensembles to the Chinese market over the years.
"We hope our efforts can help deepen cultural understanding among youths from the two countries."
A Russian artist shows her creations to a visitor during a cultural exchange event in Heihe, Heilongjiang province. [Wang Jianwei / Xinhua]
The year of 2009 marked the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Russia.
Two jointly produced arts and culture gala shows were staged respectively in Moscow on June 17 and in Beijing on Oct 13.
The performances won sweeping acclaim from audiences as they celebrated cultural diversity, and rich and time-honored history.
The 2010 Year of Chinese Language featured a variety of programs, including performance, exhibitions, arts and crafts live shows, comic and animation works, and online game shows.
The Ministry of Culture of China also organized performances by the Henan Shaolin Temple Kungfu Monk Troupe, the Shenzhen Ethnic Song and Dance Troupe, an exhibition of Painted Lanterns from Zigong, Sichuan province, and an exhibition of handicrafts from Zhejiang province.
On June 16, a concert was staged at the Kremlin Theatre in Russia to mark the 10th anniversary of the signature of The Treaty of Good-neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation between China and Russia.
Chinese president Hu Jintao and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev attended the concert and made speeches before it opened to more than 5,000 viewers from the two countries.
Featuring 12 programs, the concert involved some 170 dancers, musicians and vocalists.
From Dec 2 to Dec 7, a Russian Cultural Festival was successfully held in Beijing.
A Chinese Culture Festival will run from September to November this year in Russia, according to the Year 2011-2012 Sino-Russian Cultural Cooperative Agreement.
"The festival will bring to audiences in more than 10 cities in Russia a comprehensive program about Chinese art and culture," he explained.
In 2010 and 2011, two Sino-Russian Cultural Trade Fairs were held in Heihe, northeastern Heilongjiang province.
Attracting at least 100,000 visitors from the two countries, the cultural trade fairs is comprised of 38 programs, ranging from sales of Russian and Chinese creative and cultural products, photos, paintings, handicrafts, and cultural seminars.
The third cultural trade fair is scheduled to run simultaneously in Russia and China from Aug 18 to Aug 24.
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