Remarks by Ambassador Luo Zhaohui at the Guangzhou Ballet Performance

(Sirifort Auditorium, 1 February 2018)

Mrs.Riva Ganguly Das, Director General of Indian Council for Cultural Relations,

Mr. Chen Jianwen, Head of Chinese Delegation,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Namaste and a very good evening!

Thank you all for participating in today's ballet show. Thank you Mrs. Das for your very warm remarks.

Today's ballet show is co-hosted by the Chinese Embassy, ICCR and China Federation of Literary and Art Circles.

When I was the Chinese Ambassador in Pakistan 12 years ago, I tried to introduce a ballet show from China to Islamabad. I failed. I am so happy to see it realized in New Delhi today. This is the first time that the Chinese ballet comes to India. Why do I want to do this?

Firstly, I would like to promote cultural exchanges between our two countries, and help Indian people understand China better. Arts are beyond boundaries. Before joining the Foreign Service, I was doing research on the history of Indian Arts. My wife Dr. Jiang Yili was doing research on the comparative study of Hinduism and Buddhism. My late teacher Professor Xu Fancheng stayed here in India for 35 years. One Chinese university has started to issue BA and MA degrees to Yoga students. The Bollywood movie Dangal has been a great box office success. Recently the movie The Secret Superstar goes popular again in China. Looking back into the history, eminent monks like Xuan Zang and Bodhidharma traveled long distances between China and India over the mountains and oceans and spread the seeds of civilizations. They are the pioneers of China-India exchanges. The ballet dancers today are part of them.

Secondly, I would like to show the world that China is a very diverse and inclusive civilization. The world is getting to know more and more about Chinese food, medicine, martial arts and Taiji. However they know not too much about Chinese ballet. We have not only classical ballet like The Swan Lake but also those merged with traditional Chinese art forms such as The Butterfly Lovers which you will enjoy tonight.

Thirdly, I would like to show the world that China is always ready to learn and accept from all the differnt cultures. For the past 2500 years, Chinese people have been believed in Confucius teachings. But we have also learned Buddhism from India, and we accepted socialism from the West. Ballet, as a form of art, originated from the West with a history of 500 years. China embraced it more than 60 years ago. Now it becomes very popular in China. We have ten famous Ballet troupes. Guangzhou Ballet is one of the best. It has received a lot of awards from around the world.

Last but not the least, I wish you all have a wonderful evening with an unforgettable memories of an elegant, professional ballet show.

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