On 9 September 2017, the Chinese Mission to the EU held its annual “China Open House Day” in Brussels. By opening its doors to the public, the Mission tries to help the European people get a glimpse into the Chinese history, culture, tradition and get an overview of the latest development and progress in China.
During this year’s event, the Chinese Mission to the EU presented many Chinese traditions – acrobatics, music, folk dance, calligraphy, painting, cuisine, acupuncture, tea ceremony, Tai Chi, Qigong, as well as modern China and Chinese culture, socioeconomic achievements of China over the past five years, on-going reform and opening up as well as highlights of exchanges between China and the EU and fruitful outcome of their cooperation across the board by means of short lectures, photo exhibition, video, quiz and visual reality. Also on the Open House, the best known Belgian table tennis players Mr. Jean-Michel Saive, Vice-President of the Belgium Olympic Committee and his brother Philippe Saive, presented to the audience a fabulous humorous table tennis demonstration.
Fast face-changing performance by Chinese artist
Face-Changing is an ancient Chinese dramatic art that is part of the more general Sichuan opera. Performers wear brightly colored costumes and move to quick, dramatic music. They also wear vividly colored masks, typically depicting well known characters from the opera, which they change from one face to another almost instantaneously with the swipe of a fan, a movement of the head, or wave of the hand.
Lion dance performance by la Mante Belge
Lion dance is a form of traditional dance in Chinese culture and other Asian countries in which performers mimic a lion’s movements in a lion costume. The lion dance is usually performed during the Chinese New Year and other Chinese traditional, cultural and religious festivals. It may also be performed at important occasions, special celebrations, or may be used to honour special guests by the Chinese communities.
Health Qigong demonstration by the Belgian Health Qigong Federation
Health Qigong is a holistic system of coordinated body posture and movement, breathing, and meditation used for health, spirituality, and martial arts training. Qigong is now practiced throughout China and worldwide for recreation, exercise and relaxation, preventive medicine and self-healing.
Kids learning Chinese calligraphy
Chinese calligraphy is a form of aesthetically pleasing writing (calligraphy), or, the artistic expression of human language in a tangible form. Distinguishing features of calligraphy include an emphasis on motion charged with dynamic life. According to Stanley-Baker, “Calligraphy is sheer life experienced through energy in motion that is registered as traces on silk or paper, with time and rhythm in shifting space its main ingredients.” Calligraphy has also led to the development of many forms of art in China, including seal carving, ornate paperweights, and inkstones.
Sheng solo by son of a Chinese diplomat
Sheng, also known as Chinese bagpipe, is a popular polyphonic instrument. It is one of the oldest blow instruments, with images depicted dating back to 1100 BC, and there are actual instruments from the Han Dynasty that have been preserved till today. It is one of the main instruments in Kunqu and some other forms of Chinese Opera. Now it’s also used in the modern large Chinese orchestra.
Table tennis demonstration by Saive brothers
Table tennis, also known as ping pong, is a sport in which two or four players hit a lightweight ball back and forth across a table using a small bat. It is a very popular sport in China. Chinese players have won the men’s World Championship 60% of the time since 1959; in the women’s competition, Chinese players have won all but two of the World Championships since 1971. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, 2012 London Olympics, and 2016 Rio Olympics, China won all possible gold medals.