Beverly Hills to Celebrate Chinese Spring Festival
The Fourth “Happy Chinese New Year • Charming Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei” event to celebrate the Year of Dog Spring Festival is scheduled to be held in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California on February 10 and 11, 2018.
The Fourth “Happy Chinese New Year • Charming Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei” event to celebrate the Year of Dog Spring Festival is scheduled to be held in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles on February 10 and 11, 2018. The celebration will bring together cultural legacies and resources from Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei Province for the first time, including varieties of art forms: Peking Opera and dances from Beijing, martial arts and folk music from Tianjin, and acrobatics from Hebei. The event held around the time of the Chinese Lunar New Year builds Chinese culture’s influence overseas, sending its warmth to overseas Chinese in Beverly Hills for a special occasion. It will be co-sponsored by Beverly Hills Conference & Visitors Bureau, China International Culture Association, Beijing Association for Cultural Exchanges, Tianjin Association for Cultural Exchanges, and the Association for Cultural Exchanges of Hebei Province.
Chinese Lunar New Year Culture
Beverly Hills is the birthplace of Hollywood movies and a world- famous tourist and cultural city. With the increasing exchange between the Chinese and Americans, demand for Chinese culture is steadily growing. A celebration of the Chinese Lunar New Year has been held in Beverly Hills for several years, popular with local residents.
Julie Wagner, executive director of Beverly Hills Conference & Visitors Bureau, introduced, “Beverly Hills cooperated with China International Culture Association and Beijing Association for Cultural Exchanges to hold the grand celebrations of Chinese Lunar New Year since 2015. The celebration has been popular in the city and is influential in southern California, spreading knowledge and education on Beijing’s culture and strengthening friendship between the two cities. The Government of Beverly Hills attaches high importance to the event and looks forward to Chinese artists who bring culture and art to locals at the upcoming celebration.”
Bringing together Artists from Three Places
The 2018 celebration will enable audiences to see cultural resources from Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei and will present wonderful performances and intangible cultural heritage display. A gala organised by Tangying Culture, contains Peking Opera, dance, martial arts, and acrobatics, displaying a festive atmosphere. It is the first time the celebration is composed of delegations from the three regions, each displaying their own culture.
Peking Opera, the quintessence of Chinese culture, is a comprehensive art integrating singing, dialogue, pantomime, acrobatics and martial arts. It is well-known and enjoys high popularity worldwide. Huo Yuanjia (1868–1910) was a patriotic martial artist born in Xiaonanhe Village, Jingwu Town, Tianjin Municipality. His Chin Woo martial arts is domestically well-known. With acrobatics in Hebei Province having solid basis, they are sure to bring a big difference to local visitors.
The event not only has performances, but displays intangible cultural heritage. During the celebration, besides the show of Yangliuqing New Year Paintings from Tianjin and paper cuttings from Yuxian County, Hebei Province, artists specialised in arranging flowers, guqin (a seven-stringed musical instrument), and incense ceremony will demonstrate crafting skills on site. The event director said, “I hope the event can show a culturally and economically prosperous Beijing-tianjin-hebei region to the world.”
Assisting in Cultural Exchange
Based on previous experience, the “Happy Chinese New Year” celebration has expanded. The intangible cultural heritage, the “Charming Beijing” gala, and other activities display Beijing’s culture and offer opportunities for Chinese artists and Beverly Hill residents to share Chinese Lunar New Year customs together.
Participation of delegations from Tianjin and Hebei has enriched the celebration’s programme and has shown outcomes in the coordinated development of the three areas. As one official from the Tianjin Association for Cultural Exchanges introduced, “Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei boast profound cultures. Their joint participation will promote cultural exchanges among the three areas and help outsiders better come to know and appreciate the Beijing-tianjin-hebei region.” Zhang Zhongqi, council member of the Association for Cultural Exchanges of Hebei Province, said, “Before the event, Hebei has been active in participating in various cultural exchanges. Joining in the celebration with Beijing and Tianjin and displaying overseas culture is an important opportunity for us.”
Julie Wagner said, “In recent years, we would come to China to promote our business and saw many folk customs and arts. However, many Americans haven’t seen them. We hope to bring these performances back to the States and offer Americans an opportunity to appreciate them.” Since the celebration was held in Beverly Hills in 2015, tickets were popular and sold out in 48 hours. “At every conclusion of the celebration, people always ask when it will be held again.”
With the efforts from all sectors, the scale and influence of the “Happy Chinese New Year” event has been expanded, and its quality and reputation has been enhanced. It has made “Spring Festival,” the most important traditional Chinese festival, a worldwide celebration and has played a major role in helping people overseas to know more about Chinese culture and strengthening bonds of friendship. The event will be recognised in the world.
The Charming Beijing Variety Show in 2017
Residents in Beverly Hills taking photos with the Chinese character “Fu (fortune)” for the Year of Rooster Spring Festival in 2017