Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Zhang Yan at the Opening Ceremony of Yunnan Acrobatic Performance
2011/09/21

(Sirifort Auditorium, New Delhi, September 20th, 2011)

Pro. Shahid Mehdi, Vice President of ICCR

Amb.Suresh Goel, Director General of ICCR

Excellencies of the Diplomatic Corps,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good evening! Thank you for coming to the performance by Yunnan Acrobatic Troupe from China. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the ICCR for inviting the troupe to perform in India under the Cultural Exchange Program between the two countries. The ICCR's longstanding and fruitful effort in promoting international cultural exchange is highly appreciated.

This year is the Year of China-India Exchange announced during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to India last December. A number of exchanges in political, economic and cultural fields are organized throughout the Year. The tour by Yunnan Acrobatic Troupe India and performing in New Delhi, Chandigarh and Jaipur, is part of the exchange program. Included in this exchange program, a 500-member Indian youth delegation, led by Mr. Maken, Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, also set out earlier today on a visit to China. These and other exchanges will undoubtedly provide fresh impetus to the furtherance of friendly relations and cooperation between the two countries.

Yunnan is a southwestern province of China, which has the distinction of being home to 25 of China's ethnic groups. Therefore, the culture and art performance of Yunnan are imbued with a rich ethnic flavor. Yunnan is geographically close to India. The historical "Southern Silk Route" that passed through Yunnan province played an important role in facilitating cultural exchanges and trade between China and India. In recent years Yunnan has intensified its cultural and trade interactions with India.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Acrobatics has a universal appeal. Chinese acrobatics is a time-honored tradition that goes back to the New Stone Age. It used to be performed with a mix of other variety of arts and later became an independent art form popular with both ordinary people and royalty. After the founding of the People's Republic of China, professional acrobatic troupes were established by the government. This ancient art form was therefore given a new life. Over the years Chinese acrobatics has attracted fans everywhere in the world and won many international awards, contributing to the promotion of friendship and mutual understanding between the Chinese and other peoples.

Tonight I hope all of you will enjoy the colorful performance by the Yunnan acrobatic troupe.

Thank you.

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