Autumn River Boatman

Grand Opening of BU Confucius Institute

A nearly full house at the Anderson Center Concert Theater Friday evening November 6th witnessed the grand opening of the Confucius Institute of Chinese Opera at Binghamton University. There are 300 Confucius Institutes around the world, whose mission is to promote Chinese language and culture. Of the 64 Confucius Institutes in the US, Binghamton University will be the ONLY one to include xiqu or Chinese opera. Following presentations by Zu-yan Chen, Director of the Confucius Institute at BU; Vice President Ba Tu of the National Academy of Chinese Theater Arts in Beijing; and Education Counsellor Cen Jianjun from the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in New York, the audience was given a demonstration of traditional Chinese musical instruments used in Chinese opera. Then students from the National Academy of Chinese Theater Arts in Beijing delighted and awed spectators by presenting scenes from 6 classical Chinese operas. The program combined elegant costuming, balletic dance, entrancing music, enchanting humor, and impressive acrobatics. The Chinese Consullar representative said this collaboration with Binghamton University builds a golden bridge to promote educational exchanges and greater cultural understanding and sows seeds of friendship upon fertile lands of our two nations. What a wonderful additional to our arts community and what a coup for Binghamton University!

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