On September 24, 2015, Saskatoon Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration was held at TCU Place Theatre. This amazing show was jointly planned and organized by Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan and local Chinese communities. An estimated over 2,000 people attended the celebration. September 26 is the Global Confucius Institute Day. The Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration was greatly sponsored by Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban). The main organizers of the celebration included Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan, Federation of Saskatoon Chinese Canadian Organizations (FSCCO) and Alliance of China – Canada Enterprises & Entrepreneurs (ACCEE).
Shandong University Art Troupe took a long journey to Saskatoon from China for the performance tour. They celebrated the Mid-Autumn Festival together with Saskatoon local Chinese and citizens. Special thanks to the strong support of Respon Wealth Management Corp., Happy Life Wealth Management Inc., Zhang Bro Development Corp. and Ma Land Developments Corporation.
Many guests attended the celebration, including Minister-Counselor Yuxin Yang and First Secretary Zhisong Yin from the Education Office Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Canada, Don Atchison, mayor of Saskatoon, Dr. Jim Basinger, Associate Vice-President of University of Saskatchewan, Dr. Jay Kalra, Chair of the University of Saskatchewan Council, delegates from the federal, provincial and municipal government, delegates from many social groups in Saskatoon and business people as well as scholars and professors from universities.
The first performance came from Shandong University Art Troupe, it’s an instrumental ensemble called “The Glad Tidings”, after it was the elegant classical instrumental ensemble “Blooming Flowers and Full Moon”. To carry forward Chinese culture and celebrate the Confucius Institute Day, members of Shandong University Art Troupe travelled many cities throughout Canada. Their wonderful performances were professional Chinese culture feast to all audiences.
The Suona solo “Bartack” is a folk song of Hebei Province in China. The resounding tone of Suona, low and nasal voice of Ka Xi, crisp and high-pitched note of mouth harp forms a sharp contrast. These instruments present a humor scene of which everyone sings to each other. Chi’s performance impressed the audience and won tremendous applause.
Later on, members of Shandong University Troupe played Chinese musical instrument ensemble “The Thoughts of Confucius”, solo “No Place Better Than My Hometown” and bamboo flute solo “The Merry Song of Yi River”. The applause was long and the audiences enjoyed their performances with great passion.
Chinese musical instrument ensemble “The Thoughts of Confucius” performed by Shandong University Art Troupe. As universally acknowledged, Confucius is a famous ideologist, politician, educator, the originator of Confucianism, and a great personage as well. The song was created by Mr. Xiang Qu, who used the special music thoughts to try to express the scourge of war before Confucius born. Then there’s a classically elegant melodies to try to describe the prosperous and peaceful scene since Confucianism came out.
Dance Group from Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan, Chinese Dance School of Saskatchewan Saskatoon Branch and Chinese Language School of Saskatoon also brought their wonderful performances. Confucius Institute Dance Group showed their classic Chinese dance: “Peach Blossom” and “Charm of Yi Village”.
“Peach Blossom” is a Han and Tang Dynasty Ancient dance. This performance depicted a beautiful picture that many peach trees are fruitful and full of branches. Young women are as beautiful as peach blossom. They have beautiful dreams for the marriage and the future.
Ukrainian student Katya Khartova, studying in Department of Music of University of Saskatchewan, sang the well-known traditional Chinese folk song “Kangding Love Song” successfully with a piano accompaniment by Yuli Chen. Before the show, she practiced her Chinese under the guidance of Ms. Xin Guo from Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan. Katya’s professionalism and emotional singing gave this show a different charm.
There was also a Qipao and Evening Dress Show performed by the Model Team of Confucius Institute at University of Saskatchewan. The model team was established in a very short period under the guidance of a professional model, Yan He. Members of the team rehearsed almost every day in the two weeks before the celebration. The professional performance background decoration and music choosing left a deep impression on the audience. Xin Guo, teacher from Confucius Institute also participated in the show.
Shandong University Art Troupe also brought an exquisite Chinese painting and calligraphy show "Orchid." With the melodious zither music, artist Jing Fang finished her ink brush painting proficiently. After that, Shandong University Art Troupe presented the newly created painting to Mr. Don Atchison, mayor of Saskatoon, and he stood on the stage and took pictures with Jing Fang.
The grand finale of the celebration was Dragon and Lion Dance co-performed by Federation of Saskatoon Chinese Canadian Organizations and Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan. The performance started by a yellow and a red lion playing, and then dragon team and dance team came on stage, which brought the atmosphere to a climax.
Chinese dragon is a symbol of China, and it is believed to bring good luck to people. The dragons possess qualities that include great power, dignity, fertility, wisdom and auspiciousness.
Saskatoon Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration was a big success of co-efforts of Confucius Institute at the University of Saskatchewan and the Chinese communities, and has won high praise from the audiences. The celebration helped foreign friends a better understanding of the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival culture. Local Chinese from Saskatoon also enjoyed themselves with warm festival atmosphere.