China, Australia see closer cultural ties as two artists share stage in Beijing

13:24, April 28, 2011      

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Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong (C, front) and Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard (3rd R, front) pose for a group photo with performers after an evening gala in Beijing, capital of China, April 27, 2011. Liu and Gillard watched an evening gala of western and Chinese cultures Wednesday. The gala marked the opening of the large-scale international arts festival "Meet in Beijing", which features Australia as this year' s theme country. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong and visiting Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard watched an evening gala of western and Chinese cultures in Beijing Wednesday.

The gala, featuring Australian and Chinese opera, involved artists from Australian premier national opera company Opera Australia and several top-tier traditional Chinese opera singers.

At the opening of the show, six Beijing Opera acrobatic-fighting actors acted like monkeys to the accompaniment of Bizet's famous opera Carmen, which received warm applause from the audiences.

The gala also marked the opening of a large-scale international arts festival, which features Australia as this year's theme country.

The "Meet in Beijing" arts festival, as China's state level cultural event, will gather eight Australian art group to give over 20 performances in Beijing.

Addressing the gala, Gillard said the arts festival will bind the two nations closer together as millions more Chinese will enjoy Australia's fine cultural offerings.

Noting the Year of Chinese Culture in Australia will begin in June, Gillard also expressed the hope for success of the upcoming event.

Hailing China and Australia enjoyed sound cultural exchanges, Liu voiced belief that the two countries will score closer people-to-people relationship in the future.

Attending the gala was the last official event on Gillard's visit to China, and she will wrap up the four-day visit on Thursday.

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Source: Xinhua
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