Cultural Activities in the Autumn
Beijing hosted a series of cultural activities in October. There has been a colourful, autumnal atmosphere. Beijing October Literature Festival has been held for three consecutive years. It has become an annual, cultural focus. This year, organisers have prepared about 100 events in six sections. In the “Literature Tour in Beijing,” author Ye Guangqin went with some of her readers to the Summer Palace. She talked about her indissoluble bond with the city and the historical vicissitudes the imperial garden has experienced. In a discussion themed on “Beijing, a City Worth Walking Close To,” writers and scholars, including Ning Ken, Zhu Yong, Chen Xixi and Wang Bingbing, interpreted the cultural characteristics of Beijing from the perspectives of architecture, history and culture.
The festival is also part of the “Admiring Beijing in Autumn” event series, which is organised by the Beijing Reading Festival organisers, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of reform and opening-up in China. The October Kids Literature and Art Experience Public Day in Haidian Park is an inclusive, innovative and entertaining literary event for youngsters. Literary and dramatic performances, an illustrations exhibition, parent-child drawing activities, miniature puppet shows and literary improvement training are available. The goal of the activities is to stimulate youngsters' interest in literature, enhance their literary and artistic levels and enable them to feel the charm of literature. The Beijing October Literature Festival lasts for all of the month of October. It has set off another literary craze in the city.
The 21st Beijing Music Festival is also enjoyable. This year's festival was themed on “Music Reflecting Contemporary Chinese and Western Voices.” It featured 21 wonderful performances for the public over a three-week period, including ten performances of five opera pieces encompassing fully-staged, semi-staged and immersive theatre; music theatre productions; six symphonic concerts; a chamber-music concert; three other shows; and one cine- concert. Thirteen non-profit events were also held, including children's charity concerts, master classes, workshops and opera lectures. Since this year's festival coincides with the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening up, innovative settings and planning were employed to commemorate this anniversary. The festival is the earliest classical music festival to focus on Chinese concepts and has sought to deepen explorations of the concept this year. It is the first time in the history of the music festival that Chinese elements and Chinese background were chosen as the core theme. Farewell My Concubine and The Orphan of Zhao have distinctive Chinese elements and were performed this year. They feature unconventional artistic expressions and profound Chinese cultural implications. The performances are considered models of combining Chinese culture with Western aesthetics and caused a great sensation among the audience.
Chinese culture can be shared with the whole world. The 2018 Beijing International Ballet Competition for Dance Schools and Dance Festival amazed young dancers, ballet masters and dance education experts from 38 countries and regions with its Chinese-style opening ceremony. The classical dance drama Butterfly Lovers and the traditional music and dance show Chen Xiang were included in the ceremony and demonstrated the rich, profound and longlasting dance heritage of China.
Other cultural events held in October include Photo Beijing 2018; “Smart Palace Museum,” which launched along with the release of the first functional, thematic game covering this subject and the first ancient-painting-themed music album; and the National Art Museum of China International Exhibition Exchange Series: Landscape of the Mind: Masterpieces from Tate Britain (1700–1980), a top art exhibition held for the first time in China. A large number of cultural activities, dazzling performances and exhibitions have enabled people to truly appreciate the cultural atmosphere of Beijing, experience its endless creativity and enjoy its splendour.