xi's moments
Home | China-US

Virtual celebrations keep Spring Festival joy alive

By MINLU ZHANG in New York | China Daily | Updated: 2021-02-18 09:51

A sculpture of an ox commands attention in San Francisco on Monday. Eleven such sculptures went on display in the US city for the Spring Festival. LIU YILIN/XINHUA

With Lunar New Year celebrations largely moving from the streets to screens this year, the pandemic-driven transition has failed to dampen spirits of those enjoying the Spring Festival.

In the US, a virtual reception and concert were hosted by the Chinese embassy, with a fusion of Chinese and Western music beamed out to welcome in the Lunar New Year.

The start of the Lunar New Year - the most important traditional holiday in Chinese culture - this year fell on Friday, with the arrival of the Year of the Ox.

"In the Chinese culture, ox symbolizes stamina, energy and dedication," said Cui Tiankai, the Chinese ambassador to the US, at the 2021 Chinese New Year Online Reception and Symphony Concert, which was streamed last Thursday.

"I hope that we will show the spirit of the ox, and work together for a better shared future, for the Chinese and American people and people of the whole world."

First in fluent Mandarin and then English, Steven Orlins, president of the National Committee on US-China Relations, said: "I myself was born in the Year of Ox, so it will be my year."

"In this new year, in the spirit of the ox, my national committee colleagues and I will continue to work hard in building US-China dialogues and exchanges and improving the bilateral relationship."

The virtual reception was followed by a concert by the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra. The concert's performances were selected to send a message of reunion, gratitude and new beginnings, Zhao Haisheng, minister counselor for cultural affairs at the embassy, told Xinhua.

Top orchestras in the US, including the San Francisco Symphony, the New York Philharmonic and the Philadelphia Orchestra, moved their Chinese New Year concerts online this year.

In New York, governors, educators, scholars, artists and businesspeople all sent their best wishes to China and for China-US relations at an online celebration held by the Chinese Consulate General.

New year wishes

"On behalf of Governor (Andrew) Cuomo, myself and the entire State of New York, I want to wish you xin nian kuai le," said the lieutenant governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, in expressing new year wishes in Chinese.

Chinese Consul General in New York Huang Ping rang the closing bell at the Nasdaq stock exchange in New York on Chinese New Year's Eve. There are more than 175 Chinese companies listed on the Nasdaq.

"Let's work together with the perseverance, bravery, and strength like the ox to create a big bull market for the well-being of humanity and to build a community with a shared future for mankind," Huang said.

The Empire State Building put on a lighting show on Feb 10 to honor the start of Lunar New Year celebrations.

"May the Year of the Ox bring us more opportunities to expand our partnership and cooperation," Huang said at the virtual ceremony. The diplomat expressed the hope that the Empire State Building will draw many Chinese visitors after the pandemic.

The lighting show marked the 21st year in a row that the iconic New York building has been illuminated in red for the Lunar New Year.

The building also unveiled a new Spring Festival Window Exhibition in its Fifth Avenue lobby in partnership with the Chinese Consulate General in New York.

The window display, designed by United Design Lab in collaboration with China Arts and Entertainment Group, is titled "Back to Order" and features traditional and historical Chinese symbols.

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349