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Edinburgh holds Chinese New Year Concert
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Edinburgh holds Chinese New Year Concert

Tiger leaps over Mount Guan at the breaking of Spring,

Rabbit climbs the Mayflower to see in the change in seasons

On 21st January, the 2023 Edinburgh Chinese New Year Concert was held at Usher Hall, as an important part of the UK’s Chinese New Year festivities. The Royal Scottish National Orchestra gave an unforgettable performance in front of a full house. The entire concert focused on showcasing the best of European and Chinese music, especially creating a cross-culture fusion showing the beauty of traditional Chinese culture whilst pursuing intercultural innovation and promotion of peaceful relations between China and Scotland, and expressing the most heartfelt Chinese New Year felicitations to the Scottish people.

At 6pm local time on the last day of the Lunar Calendar, festivities for 2023 were opened on the plaza in front of Usher Hall to the rhythm of drums and vibrant lion and dragon dancing. In attendance were the Right Honorable Lord Provost of Edinburgh Robert Aldridge, Hou Danna Acting Consul General of the Chinese Consulate General in Edinburgh, Speaker of Scottish Parliament , Deputy Director of the Scottish Government Foreign Affairs Office, General Manager of Bank of China (UK) Ltd. Glasgow Branch Mr. Anson Tang of Historic Environment Scotland, a representative of the Culture Department of the Chinese Embassy, Executive Chair of the Asian Association for Culture, Commerce and Education in Europe Ms. Jessica Guo, a representative of Edinburgh Tourism Action Group, MSPs, Lords Provost of a number of regions and cities across Scotland and other government officials. Before the start of the concert, Right Honorable Lord Provost of Edinburgh Robert Aldridge, Hou Danna Acting Consul General of the Chinese Consulate General in Edinburgh, and other VIP guests gathered to paint eyes on the lion, and mark the start of the Year of the Rabbit with traditional wishes for prosperity.

Following the cessation of Covid restrictions worldwide, and two years without a Chinese New Year Concert, the event returned to the gilded auditorium of Usher Hall where the organizers invited the Royal Scottish National Orchestra to perform as the main event. The 2023 CNY performance program includes: “Spring Festival Overture”, “The Moldau”, "Hungarian Dance", “To Flowers”, "The Sun is Coming Out, Cheerful and Joyful”, Overture to “Die Fledermaus” , “Künstler Quadrille, op. 201”, “Auf der Jagd, Polka schnell, op. 373”, “An der schönen blauen Donau, Walzer, op.314”, “Radetzky March, Op. 228”, “Long Live Friendship” and other pieces. The orchestra was led by Chinese conductor Wei Yi, winner of the Brierly Kershaw Award. Oxford graduate and talented Chinese-British flautist Daniel Shao thrilled the audience with his performance of Ma Shuilong’s Bamboo Flute Concerto on the piccolo. Travelling from America, Peking Opera star Xiaomei Yu performed alongside the orchestra, innovatively merging European music with Peking Opera in a climactic cross-cultural performance. At the end of the evening, an encore was given, playing the traditional Auld Lang Syne, spreading the message of friendship.

The 2023 Edinburgh Chinese New Year Concert organizers extend their fondest new year’s wishes to the people of Scotland, hope China continues to grow in prosperity, happiness and health, and trusts the friendship between China and Scotland will be everlasting!

The 2023 Edinburgh Chinese New Year Concert gratefully received generous support from Edinburgh City Council, the Chinese Consulate in Edinburgh, China National Tourism Office London, Bank of China (UK) Ltd., China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd., UK Chinese Business Association, Edinburgh Tourism Action Group, Henan Broadcasting System Martech Centre, the UK Federation of Shandong Associations, Wo Hui Mandarin, Haier Appliances UK Co. Ltd., and Baihinia Culture Group Corporation Limited.


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