Chinese cultural gala on National Mall
The annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival draws more than 1 million visitors to the National Mall in Washington. This year, China and Kenya were invited to participate. Despite hot weather, opening day on Wednesday attracted enormous interest from visitors who discovered the rich cultural heritage from the Asian and African nations.
The festival, which runs until June 29 and then resumes on July 2 to July 6, has something for every age group.
Children can watch a puppet show, music lovers can listen to a performce by the Zhejiang Wu Opera or the pristine Dimen Dong Folk Chorus. And there were Chinese cooking demonstrations. Craftsmen from China will also make paper cuts, New Year’s prints, clay figurines, kites, embroidery, batiks, porcelain and sachets that are used during annual celebrations. Some 120 Chinese artists and craftsmen are participating in the festival.
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At the entrance to the festival, a classical Chinese saying welcomed visitors, which in English means: “Study hard and make progress every day.”
Liu Xingxiu, an embroidery artist of the ethnic Qiang group from southwest China’s Sichuan province, does her needle work.