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China-Nigeria Cultural Fiesta boosts harmonization of Chinese and Nigerian cultures

On Tuesday, at the China-Nigeria Cultural Fiesta honoring the cultures of the two nations, the gentle melodies of Chinese instruments blended with the rhythmic beat of Nigerian drums to create a symphony that echoed with the spirit of unity.

Students from 12 public schools in Abuja, Nigeria, flocked to the China Cultural Center, the location of the 2023 annual China-Nigeria Cultural Fiesta, decked out in stunning Chinese and Nigerian costumes and richly used props, to compete among themselves for two main categories, namely Chinese dance and Nigerian dance.

Chinese Corners is an extracurricular club that government-owned secondary schools in Abuja formed to learn about and exchange ideas about Chinese culture. It is organized by the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria and the Secondary Education Board of Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

“For me, this is an incredibly thrilling experience. In addition to witnessing this, I’m happy to have participated and triumphed in it “Gift Paul, an Abuja suburbia student at Government Day Secondary School, remarked. She was a part of the team that placed first for her school in the previous year’s competition.

The school won the top award in both the Chinese and Nigerian dance competitions this year, making it the greatest winner once again. “Whenever I’m dancing, I feel happy. I have more energy to work harder because of it. We needed a month to be ready for the tournament. We performed a different dance from the others, and in Paul’s opinion, ours was the greatest.

The young performers skillfully switched between the flowing motions of Chinese fan dances and the vibrant, intense rhythms of Nigerian traditional dance forms, providing an amazing display for the audience that watched the expanding people-to-people engagement between China and Nigeria. The acclaim that greeted each act was not only for the riveting performance, but also for the bridge that art and culture, as a common language, had established between the two countries.

Yakubu Ibrahim, a member of the China-Nigeria Alumni, stated in a previous interview with Xinhua that one of the biggest issues Chinese Corners was dealing with was a shortage of Chinese language instructors. Many attendees, along with their teachers, are there entirely out of admiration for Chinese culture and have little to no knowledge of the Chinese language.

“They just downloaded videos of Chinese songs and dances, and they watched videos and practiced over and over again,” Ibrahim stated. Despite her limited understanding of the words, Martha Fortune, whose school took home the top prize, expressed that she thought the Chinese song her team sang was an intriguing tale.

Fortune acknowledged her admiration for Chinese films and staged dances, but she also expressed a strong desire to study the language at school or in the future. Instructor Bright Abovi of the Government Day Secondary School in Dutse is pleased with his team for taking home the competition’s top honor.

“Every time we work on this program, I picture myself as a Chinese guy. “In terms of race, I am a Nigerian man, but I think like a Chinese person,” Abovi said in an interview with Xinhua.

The cultural exchange between Nigeria and China has been substantially boosted, according to Li Xuda, the cultural counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria, and the China-Nigeria Cultural Fiesta has thus far established itself as a “well-known cultural brand.”

Nigeria and China are two historical giants in culture. In the historical process of our country’s freedom and restoration, culture is crucial,” he continued.

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