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Remarks by H.M. Mr. Chen Yuming, Ambassador of China at the "Happy Chinese New Year" Concert of Chinese Folk Music
2015/02/17

(15 February 2015)

Ladies and Gentlemen:

"Rain sees spring off, and snow welcomes her back". With the Chinese New Year of Sheep approaching, on behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Sweden, I would like to warmly welcome you to the "Happy Chinese New Year" Concert of Chinese Folk Music, and to extend my greetings and good wishes to you.

This year marks the 65th anniversary of the China-Sweden diplomatic relations. In these 65 years, the multi-level friendly exchanges and pragmatic cooperation between the two countries are fruitful in political, economic, scientific and cultural fields. Tens of Swedish cultural institutions, including Royal Swedish Opera Ballet, Folk Song and Dance Ensembles, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, and the famous ABBA, visited China, sharing feasts of Swedish arts with the Chinese people. Meanwhile, Chinese traditional opera, folk dance, acrobatics and ballet, symphony and other modern arts came across the ocean to Sweden. The events such as "Happy Chinese New Year", "China Festival" and the Exhibition of the Terracotta Solders enlivened the enthusiasm of the Swedish public towards Chinese culture. Shortly after the famous Chinese writer Mo Yan won the Nobel Prize of Literature in 2012, Chinese literature became better-known to the Swedish readers. Mencius, an ancient Chinese philosopher once said: "It is most valuable for friends to truly understand each other". Thanks to a full range of exchanges, the understanding and friendship between the Chinese people and the Swedish people keep deepening, despite the distance.

To celebrate the 65th anniversary of China-Sweden diplomatic relations and the incoming Chinese New Year of Sheep, we have invited artists from Jinan Opera and Dance Drama Theater of China to present this evening's concert of Chinese folk music, named "Jasmine in a Sunny Summer". Since its establishment in 1959, Jinan Opera and Dance Drama Theater of China has created and performed splendid original works such as the musicals "The Flying Crane" and "Shun the Great". These works were performed and well received in European and Asian countries. Today these artists will play Chinese and Swedish classic and folk music, also adaptions from Chinese and Swedish folk songs like "Jasmine on a Sunny Summer Day". I believe, impressed by the beauty of the melodies and cultural integration, we will enjoy the warmth of a Sunny Summer Day on this cold snowy evening. Let's appreciate their superb performance with smile and applause.

Ladies and gentlemen, I hope you will have a very pleasant evening, and may the New Year of Sheep bring you good luck. Gott Nytt År!

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