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Australia celebrates Spring Festival with overseas Chinese

中国日报网 2013-02-25 10:55

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Sydney Town Hall was the city's hottest spot for Chinese on Sunday night, as it hosted a Spring Festival gala performed by Chinese artists.

Hundreds of audience arrived early for the show, posing for photos with posters of the stars of the night, which featured some of China's finest singers, including Dong Wenhua, Yan Weiwen and Cai Guoqing and Peking Opera masters Yu Kuizhi and Li Shengsu.

The show, called Cultures of China, Festival of Spring, is part of a global performance tour organized by the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of China's State Council to entertain overseas Chinese during the Lunar New Year. The tour has been organized every year since 2009.

Sydney, home to more than 500,000 ethnic Chinese, with almost as many visiting the city each year, has been included in the global performance tour since 2010.

He Yafei, deputy director of the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of China's State Council, which organized the tour to Sydney, said he hopes the show provides quality entertainment for homesick Chinese in Australia.

Over the past four years, the annual performance has become very popular with not only the Chinese community, but also many people who are interested in Chinese traditional culture, according to Councilor Robert Kok of City of Sydney, who himself is ethnic Chinese.

Since 2004, Sydney has hosted a two-week-long Chinese New Year carnival to celebrate Spring Festival.

The carnival usually features a series of cultural events, including the annual Twilight Parade, combining traditional and contemporary Asian culture, and dragon boat races. This year, for the first time, the celebration also includes a light projection onto the Sydney Opera House on the first day of the Chinese New Year.

Even on Sunday, the fifteenth day of the Chinese Lunar New Year, known as the Lantern Festival, which marks the end of Spring Festival, the celebratory atmosphere was still strong in Sydney, with flamboyant banners featuring a gold snake hanging from street poles.

Questions:

1. How many ethnic Chinese is Sydney home to?

2. Since which year has Sydney hosted the Chinese New Year carnival?

3. What event was a first for this year?

Answers:

1. More than 500,000.

2. 2004.

3. A light projection onto the Sydney Opera House.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

About the broadcaster:

Emily Cheng is an editor at China Daily. She was born in Sydney, Australia and graduated from the University of Sydney with a degree in Media, English Literature and Politics. She has worked in the media industry since starting university and this is the third time she has settled abroad - she interned with a magazine in Hong Kong 2007 and studied at the University of Leeds in 2009.

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