Chinese Ballet “Raise the Red Lantern” in the Philippines

Cultural exchanges never stop despite the territorial disputes between China and the Philippines

October 24th, 2016
Min-ni Wu, CD News

Supported by the Chinese embassy, the National Ballet of China is finally going to perform its hit ballet, “Raise the Red Lantern”, in Manila, the Philippines later this month, following three years of preparations. According to the Chinese Embassy in the Philippines, the performance runs as part of their cultural exchange programme.

On October 27th and 28th the ballet show will take place at the Cultural Centre of the Philippines. The event is organized together by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the Cultural Center of the Philippines, the Ministry of Culture of the Peoples Republic of China and the Embassy of China in the Philippines. The performer, the National Ballet of China, is a renowned company which always serves as a cultural envoy, using its international influence to spread Chinese culture around the world.

The show, “Raise the Red Lantern,” is the ballet adaption of the acclaimed Oscar-nominated film, directed by Zhang Yimou. Based on the 1990 novel, “Wives and Concubines,” it tells the story of a young woman married as a concubine to a rich man in the Warlord Era in China (1920s). The ballet is famous for its creative blending of Chinese traditional Peking Opera and Western Contemporary Ballet.

In exchange the Philippine National Ballet will visit China next year for further cultural interaction.

The cultural centre’s artistic director, Chris B. Millado, described the cultural programmes as a “handshake not only between partners, but also between audiences and between cultures.”

Pan Feng, cultural counselor to the Chinese Embassy, remarked that the cultural relations with the Philippines have stayed strong in spite of disputes the countries have regarding the South China Sea. For the last four years he has been making efforts to promote cultural exchanges between Chinese and Filipino artists. Moreover, China’s Ministry of Culture invites Filipino artists every year, meaning that cultural relations have “never stopped”, despite occasional problems.

Felipe de Leon Jnr, chairman of the National Commission for Culture and Arts (also known as the Ministry of Culture) of the Philippines, also pointed out that the cultural exchanges between his office and China has always been large in number, compared with other countries. He also mentioned that the commission has a policy of continuing cooperation with other countries, irrespective of political conditions in the country.

The cultural exchange programme will continue to serve as a bridge for mutual understanding between China and the Philippines.


Cultural Diplomacy News