Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival diversifies Radford

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Laura Ratliff
lhratliff@radford.edu

With autumn in the air, Chinese students braved the stage at Virginia Tech and Preston hall last week to sing the famous Chinese poem “Jing Ye Si” in honor of the Mid-Autumn festival.
“Learning Chinese for only three weeks, I applaud the courage to get on stage.” Professor Ping Fu said.
The audiences were made up of many native Chinese speakers, so students had to really practice before the performance. The poem that was sung is a famous and well known poem by native Chinese people. It is about sentiment and thinking of home and loved ones.
“We circled around the theme of the Mid-autumn festival. We wanted to share the culture with the audience. There are many legends about it, but we shared one of them, the most beautiful.”

The performances went well, for the most part. The performance at Preston hall didn’t start at the planned time of 7:00 PM, due to technical error.
“I think everything went very well, as soon as we started. The technician tripped and broke my computer, so because of the technical problem we had 30 minutes of delay. I didn’t have my computer for two days,” Fu said.
Lots of Kirk Scholars make up the Chinese program here at RU, learning Chinese in preparation for their excursion to China. They were heavily involved in the festival.
The female Kirk Scholar learned traditional Chinese ribbon dancing to perform on stage, while the male Kirk Scholars learned a few Kung Fu moves.
“I enjoyed ribbon dancing, we only had two practices, not three weeks like they said we’d have,” said sophomore Claicilie Mesadieu said.
The ribbon dancing was performed with children from the Blacksburg Chinese School. The Kirk scholars only had one practice with the kids and learned quickly. Many are eager to participate in the Chinese New Year festival, so that they can ribbon dance again.
“I wanted to be a Kirk Scholar, because I really enjoy Chinese culture,” Mesadieu said.
The scholarship allows students to go to China for less money than they would just studying abroad. Plus, since scholars are required to learn three semesters worth of Chinese, they gain knowledge of a very helpful language for the job market.
“I’m an accounting major and Chinese goes really well with business,” said sophomore Alexandra Raker.
With the eclectic lay of events, there was something for everyone at the festival.
“I particularly liked the Moon cakes; very tasty,”said junior Ross Norvell.
Well, no matter what was particularly liked and very tasty, many would agree that Radford University’s Mid-Autumn festival was a success, and that the students are ready to be actively involved in learning Chinese.
“This year, I see the excitement in the group, everyone is eager to learn,” Fu said.