“Vocal Music” concert represents China-EU connectivity

The China-EU Arts Dialogue focuses on vocal arts this edition and opens an intercultural dialogue through the language of music.

On April 23, the China Cultural Center in Brussels was the setting for the second edition of the China-EU Arts Dialogue, titled “Vocal Music”. Organized by the Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the European Union and the Committee of the China Arts Festival in the EU, this event was held within the framework of the fifth edition of the China Arts Festival in the EU, with the support of the China Conservatory of Music, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Kingdom of Belgium, the Europe-China “One Belt One Road” Culture & Tourism Development Committee, and the China Cultural Center in Brussels.

Around 130 guests attended the “Vocal Music” concert, including H.E. Ambassador ZHANG Ming, Head of the Chinese Mission to the EU, and his wife, Mrs. CAI Xiaoli; Mr. CHE Weimin, Minister-Counselor of the Chinese Mission to the EU; Mr. Eric PHILIPPART, Special Counselor responsible for the 2018 EU-China Tourism Year (DG GROW); and guests from the Asia-Pacific Women’s Association.

This second edition of the China-EU Arts Dialogue aimed to build a bridge connecting the East and the West through artistic exchanges. Both Chinese and Europeans musicians were invited to the stage to learn from each other, perfectly embodying the crux of intercultural dialogue. In his speech, Minister-Counselor CHE Weimin reiterated the value of people-to-people exchanges as a platform for mutual learning between cultures. He said, “I wish to see this kind of exchange keep flourishing in the future, to foster the mutual understanding and friendship between China and the EU, providing fresh vigor to the development of China-EU relations.”

Subsequently, Mr. Eric PHILIPPART took the floor and commented on the EU-China Tourism Year and how it allowed for further cooperation in the area of tourism. He observed not only the economic benefit of the development of tourism, but also the cultural gain, because travel teaches tolerance. In his opinion, travel can start with music, as the China-EU Arts Dialogue concert illustrates.

The artists participating in this intercultural dialogue were vocalists Mr. LI Pengxiang, Mrs. YUAN Hengyi, Mr. KE Xue, who is also a member of the Chinese Mission to the EU, Mrs. ZHAO Yunhong, Mr. WANG Tiemin, Mrs. Laura PETIT and pianist Mr. Xavier RIVERA. After Mr. KE Xue performed “Nessun Dorma” from the opera “Turandot”, he was thanked for his service at the Chinese Mission to the EU, where he is now finishing his final term. His appearance at the China-EU Arts Dialogue served as an occasion to say farewell.With the performance of European as well as Chinese works, a perfect blend of Chinese and Western vocal arts was achieved. The audience enjoyed the vast repertoire presented in the “Vocal Music” concert, ranging from Chinese folk songs, like “Flowing River” and “Dance of Youth”, to European pieces, like “The Drinking Song” from the opera “La Traviata” and “Hell’s Vengeance” from the opera “The Magic Flute”.