On February 19, the temple fair celebrating the Spring Festival reached the climax when Dalian Library hosted the finals of the 16th “academy cup” calligraphy contest.
In the opening ceremony before the contest, kids who are receiving education in traditional Chinese culture recited four pieces from the ancient Book of Poems, and an ensemble staged an artistic performance, reciting the classic poems Jasmine, Let’s Have a Toast, and Ode to the Prairie under music accompaniment.
The contest, which targets the elementary and middle school students, attracted 757 contestants from six competition districts, and more than 60 contestants, including those from the U.S., Russia, South Korea and other countries proceeded into the finals.
During the contest, dressed in traditional Chinese costumes, and squatting on the floor, the contestants bended the bodies and wielded writing brushes, writing four-character Chinese idioms or sentences of classic Chinese poems relating to the spring on paper.
Since 2004, Dalian Library, which is devoted to promoting Chinese cultural classics for over 20 years, has successively hosted the calligraphy contest for 15 years. Themed on promoting education in calligraphy, the contest aims to stimulate the enthusiasm of the people, especially the kids for calligraphy, and provides an opportunity for them to appreciate traditional Chinese culture. About 7000 people from both home and abroad have successively participated in the contest, with over 1000 contestants winning prizes from it. Recognized and supported by the people, it is an important cultural activity during the Spring Festival.
As the Festival of Lanterns approaches, the temple fair focuses on themes of appreciating classic Chinese customs for celebrating the Spring Festival, recollecting traditions and savoring sweet dumplings. An artificial intelligence robot roamed around in the library, interacting with the audience. Decorated with calligraphy pieces of classic poems and colorful lanterns, the temple fair was bustling with people: some were enjoying archery, operatic performance and other artistic performances, or exchanging with the companions, and occasionally gave a warm applause; some were beside the pavilions displaying Chinese zithers, appreciating music performance accompanied by the instruments; and some were savoring perfumes displayed at the pavilions; some were in the pavilions, showcasing their skills at calligraphy, paper cutting or drawing or copying traditional new year pictures from the facsimiles; some were trying their skills in reading and recording their voice on an electronic device; many people were beside a pavilion, engaging in a race to answer questions asked by the hosts on Chinese classic poems; a large crowd gathered around a pavilion, enthusiastically guessing at the riddles hanging on the long slips of paper below the lanterns.
Thousands of people participated in the temple fair.