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'An Oriental Monsoon' blows into town Thursday

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Chinese students will perform "An Oriental Monsoon" on Feb. 6, 2014, in partnership with the Confucius Institute at MTSU in Murfreesboro, Tenn. The performance is free and open to the public. (Photo courtesy of MTSU)

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — The forecast calls for “An Oriental Monsoon” at Middle Tennessee State University as a powerful, swirling display of light and sound heads for residents.

“An Oriental Monsoon,” a theatrical production by faculty and students of China’s Hangzhou Normal University, is scheduled for 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6, in Tucker Theatre on campus.

The event is free and open to the public.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for MTSU and the community to see these performers and their musical program,” said Guanping Zheng, director of the Confucius Institute, which co-sponsors the presentation with the Office of Chinese Language Council International.

The mission of the Confucius Institute is to enhance the understanding of Chinese language and culture, facilitate engagement with China, and create opportunities for exchange and collaboration between communities in Tennessee and China, officials said.

Hangzhou Normal University and the university forged a partnership on Dec. 1, 2009, when MTSU President Sidney McPhee and Hangzhou President Ye Gaoxiang signed an agreement calling for outreach programs and cultural exchanges.

The Confucius Institute at MTSU opened in 2010 and has since taught hundreds of students about Chinese language and culture.

“The Chinese culture is fascinating and our Confucius Institute plays a critical role in bringing slices of that culture to our campus for the entire community to enjoy,” McPhee said. “Not only will this visit by our friends from Hangzhou Normal be a terrific learning experience, but an entertaining one as well.”

Zheng described the upcoming program of dance, vocals and instrumentation as “traditional with a modern flavor.”

Segment titles include “Tibetan Lasses,” “Bathing in the Light of the Moon,” “Mongolian Bowl Dance,” “The Rhythm of Martial Arts,” and, in a nod to the Chinese New Year celebration of the Year of the Horse, “Thousands of Galloping Horses.”

“They have a very good international reputation,” Zheng said. “Some of the performers are among the top artists in China.”

For more information about the show, contact the Confucius Institute at 615-494-8696.

Tagged under  Arts, China, Confucius Institute, Entertainment, MTSU, Murfreesboro, Weekend Planner

Members Opinions:
February 05, 2014 at 10:27pm
I honestly think this is an amazing opportunity for students to see some authentic Chinese theater. We as a student body don’t get exposed to many international forms of entertainment, let alone theater. If anyone is to appreciate another culture we must first see how they view entertainment. I have been involved in theater most of my life and I believe that being able to see how another culture performs on stage will broaden my appreciation for theater even more. I’m especially excited to hear the music that will be in the performance, seeing that MTSU is best known for the Recording Industry program; many students may find this aspect of the performance inspiring.
It is such an honor to have students from China’s Hangzhou Normal University at MTSU and I hope MTSU students will get excited for this event since this is a “once in a life time” experience. MTSU should have more international events such as this at the school to show how incredible other countries are and how diverse the world really is. I believe that most students would agree with me when I say how oblivious we are to how other cultures behave and act. Events like this provide a fun way to learn about other cultures and MTSU could really benefit from holding more events like 'An Oriental Monsoon'.

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