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Bristol Museum Hosts Inaugural "All Under One Moon" Celebration, Bringing Together Chinese and British Communities for Mid-Autumn Festival

Photo provided by the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

On 23rd September 2023, the inaugural "All Under One Moon" brand event, "All Under One Moon - Mid-Autumn Festival Cultural Exchange Performance by Guangzhou Song and Dance Theatre," co-organised by MIC Connect and Visit West, was successfully held at the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery. The event was a lively and heart-warming occasion with thunderous applause from the audience.

Photo provided by the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

This marks the first time the "All Under One Moon" project of Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China has been initiated in Bristol, centring on the significant occasions of the Mid-Autumn Festival and China's National Day. Coincidentally, this celebration aligns with the 650th anniversary of Bristol and the 200th anniversary of Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, providing an excellent opportunity for the city to celebrate together with the diverse and rich culture of China, fostering cooperation between Bristol and its Chinese counterparts and promoting people-to-people connectivity.

The performance featured a blend of Mid-Autumn Festival elements and Lingnan cultural characteristics through dance, acrobatics, puppetry, Cantonese music and opera, and more. With the inclusion of widely recognised classic music pieces in the UK, the event presented a cultural feast that seamlessly combined tradition with innovation and popular culture. Notably, the "Ballet on Shoulders" dance, a fusion of classical Western ballet and traditional Chinese acrobatics, showcased a unique art form, emphasizing the exchange and mutual learning between Chinese and Western cultures while inheriting the excellent traditional Chinese culture. The solo performance on the Gaohu (Chinese violin) and the dance "Chasing the Clouds and Moon" painted a vivid picture of Chinese ink painting, and the contortionists’ performance "Dreaming Butterflies" infused distinct modern art elements into traditional acrobatics. The artists displayed their exquisite skills to offer a spectacular visual and auditory treat to over a thousand live audience members from Bristol.

Photos provided by the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

Royston Griffey, representing the Lord Mayor of Bristol, extended a warm welcome to the visiting guests and expressed gratitude for the successful event. He emphasized that Bristol is an inclusive and open city, and the Chinese residents and overseas Chinese in Bristol are vital components of the city's multicultural development. He expressed hopes for more cultural exchange activities to be held in Bristol in the future.

Photo provided by the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

Li Liyan, Minister Counsellor for Cultural Affairs, Chinese Embassy in the UK, extended special thanks to Bristol City Council, Visit West, and the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery for their strong support in promoting cultural exchange between China and the UK. He noted that last year marked the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the sister cities of Guangzhou and Bristol, and bilateral cultural exchanges have continued to thrive. Today's event epitomizes the mutual learning and exchange of cultures between China and the UK, serving as an example of the promotion of sister city relations between Guangzhou and Bristol.

Zhang Sheng, Deputy Director General of Guangzhou Municipal Administration of Culture, Radio, Television and Tourism, introduced Guangzhou and showcased a promotional video highlighting various aspects of Bristol's sister city, Guangzhou. He expressed hope that the high-level performance by the Guangzhou Song and Dance Theatre would reveal the unique charm of Chinese culture and arts to the people of Bristol, including the local Chinese community, during the Mid-Autumn Festival celebration.

Kathryn Davis, CEO of Visit West, said “We are thrilled to begin to welcome back our Chinese visitors, and the visit of the Guangzhou Song and Dance Theatre is as prestigious a start as we could wish for. We have been fortunate enough to welcome some key delegations over the summer, but this really is an exciting reset and restart of our Chinese visitor market.”

Dennis Hu, CEO of MIC Connect, said “This year is particularly celebratory in Bristol, and we wanted to make a meaningful and lasting contribution to those celebrations. Bristol is marking its 650th anniversary, and the Museum & Art Gallery its 200th anniversary! Being able to organize this fantastic event with performers from our sister city is the perfect way to bring communities together in celebration. We see this as the first instance of an annual celebration, that will attract Bristolians of all kinds, including the Chinese community. Bringing people together in this way is a wonderful way to encourage cultural exchange and understanding in a warm and meaningful manner. In the future, we hope to invite more Chinese cultural and tourism destinations to participate and promote through this brand event.” 

"All Under One Moon" is a local project of Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China’s "All Under One Moon" project in the UK, created by Bristol media agency MIC Connect. The project aims to invite people from various backgrounds worldwide to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival, which symbolizes reunion and harvest, just like the Harvest Festival in the UK. This event brings communities together through food and shared fun activities, promoting exchanges and understanding among people of different cultural backgrounds.

Photo provided by the Chinese Embassy in the UK.

This event received strong support from the Cultural Section of the Chinese Embassy in the UK, the China National Tourist Office London, the Bristol & West of England China Bureau, Bristol City Centre BID, Redcliffe & Temple BID, and Broadmead BID.

China MinutesKailun Sui

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