Actresses sing traditional Hainan songs in Haikou, capital of south China’s Hainan Province, June 12, 2010. Various activities were held here on Saturday to celebrate the fifth Culture Heritage Day. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

An actor performs Hainan Opera in Haikou, capital of south China’s Hainan Province, June 12, 2010. Various activities were held here on Saturday to celebrate the fifth Culture Heritage Day. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)


China celebrated the fifth Cultural Heritage Day on Saturday with a string of interactive activities.

Our reporter Zhang Nini checked out one diabolo competition in downtown Beijing and finds that individual efforts are a key to preserving the country’s opulent heritage.

It’s a sound that you can instantly recognize, and a sport embraced by men and women. Beijing opened the fifth Cultural Heritage Day with three hundred people juggling the spool. It’s a sport dating back more than six hundred years.

These clay figurines portray a vivid picture of diabolo playing in ancient times. China’s first Diabolo Museum is located in downtown Beijing. Four hundred and thirty eight objects are on display to tell of it’s history.

Just outside the Beijing Diabolo Museum, a fierce competition is taking place with three hundred people from six provinces and cities taking part.

Jin Guoming, diabolo player, said, "I have started playing diabolo as an exercise and successfully shed close to twenty kilos of weight. I am now addicted to it. The exercise makes me healthy. "

Shen Sumei, diabolo player, said, "I come from Shaanxi Province. And I hope to promote the sport to more people. And I hope someday, it could be listed as an Olympic competition. "

Spinning the diabolo is a regular sport and amusement for people in BJ. It’s also listed as a National Cultural Heritage in as early as 2006. By inviting everyone into this activity, the organizer hopes to send out this message that the protection of cultural heritage needs your participation.

The call for collective efforts is extending to more younger people. Students from Renmin University were treated to a Guqin performance on Friday night. The show heralds a half-year project aimed at endearing Guqin music to students in a hundred universities, middle and primary schools.

Zhang Qingshan, deputy director of China Arts Research Institute, said, "Guqin has carried a rich cultural meaning. It’s the favorite instrument for the great Chinese thinker Confucius. A good appreciation of Guqin music often links to the cultural attainments of Chinese literati. We hope to introduce Guqin to college students, to pass on the cultural legacy to the next generation."

In Sichuan province, the provincial museum is demonstrating the latest achievements in the protection of local cultural heritage. Art forms listed as provincial heritages are displayed. Sichuan embroidery, filigree crafts, egg shell painting and sugar icing painting have attracted a large throng of international tourists.

The exhibition has not only endeared the art forms to a wider audience, it make the important point that it’s everyone’s obligation to recognize and to cherish history and the things and activities imbedded in cultural identity.




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