URI to celebrate Confucius Institute, Chinese Moon Festival

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Dancers in the Zhejiang University Wenqin Art Troupe. Photos courtesy of troupe.

KINGSTON, R.I.—Sept. 18, 2017—Dancers, desserts and calligraphy lessons will be part of the annual Chinese Moon Festival celebration at the University of Rhode Island Sept. 29.

This year the festival coincides with the 10th anniversary of URI’s Confucius Institute, which is hosting the event along with the Chinese Flagship Program.

On Friday, Sept. 29, dancers from Zhejiang University Wenqin Art Troupe will perform in Edwards Hall, 64 Upper College Road, on the Kingston campus. The event is free and open to the public.

A reception with traditional Chinese Moon Cakes—a pastry with a dense, sweet filling—and other Chinese food will start at 5:30 p.m., also in Edwards Hall. Calligraphy lessons, paper cutting and other activities will be offered. Children of URI faculty will perform a traditional Chinese dance, just before the troupe performs at 6:30 p.m.

Located in the southern area of the Yangtze River, Zhejiang University was established 120 years ago and is one of the top five universities in China. The Wenqin Art Troupe, the only official art group at Zhejiang University, has also performed in Australia, Russia and Japan, as well as at the United Nations.

The troupe will perform folk dances, martial arts and Chinese classical music. The group has six teams, including an orchestra and a choir. Also as part of the celebration, about 20 photos students took during study abroad programs in China are on display in the Memorial Union.
The Moon Festival is one of the most important celebrations in China, dating back more than 3,000 years. Initially, it was held to give thanks for the harvest, but over the years it has evolved into a family gathering to eat and celebrate the joy of life. The day is an official holiday off from work in China.

For more information, contact Wayne He, director of URI’s Chinese Language Flagship Program and the Confucius Institute, at 401-874-4708 or waynewenchaohe@uri.edu.