LIFE / CULTURE
Cultural fiesta promotes exchanges between China, Nigeria
Night of dance and music
Published: May 20, 2021 05:43 PM


Nigerians wearing traditional costumes perform during the Irewha Hunt Festival at Shafa Abakpa town in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, Nigeria on December 26, 2016. Photo: IC

Nigerians wearing traditional costumes perform during the Irewha Hunt Festival at Shafa Abakpa town in Toto Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, Nigeria on December 26, 2016. Photo: IC

Chinese costumes and props, as well as traditional Nigerian attire, were in a colorful display at a cultural fiesta in Abuja on Tuesday, presenting a great spectacle for the audience who witnessed the growing people-to-people interaction between China and Nigeria.

Students from 12 public secondary schools in Abuja thronged the China Cultural Center, the venue of the 2021 China-Nigeria Cultural Fiesta, to compete among themselves for three main categories, namely Chinese songs, Chinese dance and Nigerian songs and dance.

The event organized by the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria and the Secondary Education Board of Nigeria's federal capital territory (FCT), is celebrated annually, and is a brainchild of the Chinese Corners, a club formed for extracurricular purposes by government-owned secondary schools in Abuja, to learn and share ideas about the Chinese culture.

For Joy Omarama, the cultural fiesta was a great opportunity for her to socialize with students from other schools, and to have the first-hand experience of Chinese and Nigerian cultures on the same stage.

"I feel very happy. I am happy to be part of this event. I am happy to learn Chinese culture," said an exited Omarama, after she and her team from the Government Secondary School Garki appeared winner at the category of Chinese songs.

"I find pleasure watching Chinese movies. I find pleasure in their dance and their songs. It warms the heart," she told the Xinhua News Agency.

Yakubu Ibrahim, an official of the FCT Secondary Education Board, revealed at the opening of the event that one of the main challenges Chinese Corners faced is the short of Chinese language teachers. Many participants and their teachers know a little or nothing about Chinese language, and they were at the event purely out of their love for Chinese culture.

"They just downloaded videos of Chinese songs and dances, and they watched videos and practiced over and over again," Ibrahim said.

Eze Adeize, Omarama's teacher, told Xinhua they started training in 2020.

"We worked hard and went through a lot together," said Adeize, "Chinese songs are not that easy to learn but they are beautiful and once you learn them you will like to keep singing them."

At the end of the event, the team from the Government Secondary School Jabi won the category of Nigerian songs and dance.

According to Li Xuda, the cultural counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria, the essence of culture is a people-to-people exchange, serving as a bridge, and promoting mutual understanding, learning between people and their countries.

"Culture is a country and nation's soul. Our countries will thrive only if our cultures thrive, and our nations will be strong only if our cultures are strong," Li said, adding the annual event offers a platform for the cultural exchanges between the two countries, and fuels the people to people friendship.  


blog comments powered by Disqus