Culture City of East Asia 2017 winner exhibits rich heritage
Changsha is demonstrating the charm of its unique cultural heritage to the world as a result of it being awarded the title "Culture City of East Asia 2017" and, as part of the program, holding an event called the "Year of Changsha".
Initiated in 2013, the Culture City of East Asia project is a tri-national event to promote cultural diversity throughout East Asia. Each year, China, South Korea and Japan vote to select one of their cities as the Culture City of East Asia to promote their national cultural development and encourage trilateral cultural exchanges.
Changsha, Harbin in Heilongjiang province and Sanya in Hainan province were the Chinese finalists for the honor this year. Changsha got the highest score of 93.4 in the competition and was crowned the winner.
Quanzhou in Fujian province, Qingdao in Shandong province and Ningbo in Zhejiang province were selected in 2014, 2015 and 2016, respectively.
The Culture Cities of East Asia 2017 - Changsha, Kyoto in Japan and Daegu in South Korea - will hold cultural activities to strengthen the exchanges. The Year of Changsha was held from April 18-20.
"Changsha, with a history of 3,000 years, has unique cultural spirit and boasts long-standing connections with Japan and South Korea," Xiang Zhaolun, vice-minister of the Ministry of Culture, said at the opening ceremony.
As an East Asia Culture City, Changsha will demonstrate its profound cultural heritage, developed public cultures, openness and active cultural exchanges on the international stage, he added.
At the National Reading Forum, one of the Year of Changsha activities, librarians and scholars from China, Japan and South Korea exchanged views on how to enhance public reading and build a universal reading system.
A folk music concert provided a musical feast by China's National Music Orchestra. Chinese Character Exhibition and other performances and activities showed regional cultures and characters to delegations and representatives of Japan and South Korea.
The deputy mayor of Kyoto, Satoshi Uemura, noted that Kyoto launched a series of cultural and artistic activities in the fields of traditional culture, modern arts, stagecraft, comedies and animation, performed by artists of three countries together.
"We hope that these activities can help with the abundant cultures of East Asia to resonate and create new cultures," he said.
In addition, Changsha officials are promoting cross-border cultural integration, expanding the international influence of the region's culture and strengthening the city's creative industries in many fields.
These festivals in Changsha met international standards, earning the provincial capital a reputation as one of the most culturally creative cities in China, according to local governmental officials.
They cited, for example, the China Golden Eagle TV Art Festival, one of the most prestigious awards and festivals in Chinese television industry; it's been held in Changsha every two years since 2000.
The Orange Isle Music Festival at Orange Island Sand Sculpture Park, located in the middle of the Xiangjiang River, gathers famous singers and bands to give an outdoor musical party every year.
The city has officially set foot on the journey to join the "Creative City Network" as a City of Media Arts, held by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
Du Yue, secretary-general of the National Commission for UNESCO in China, spoke highly of Changsha's application to join the network and added that commission members will support Changsha's efforts to apply for it.
Source: Changsha Evening News