CHINA / National

Seeking public views on lunar tunes is not crying for the moon
By Zhao Huanxin (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-07-08 05:07

China's first moon explorer, Chang'e-1, will beam Chinese music to Earth when it is launched next year, the country's lunar mission command centre announced in Beijing on Friday.

"The lunar probe will transmit 30 pieces of Chinese music to Earth from an orbit 380,000 kilometres away," Huang Qiang, spokesman for the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence, told a press conference.

In April 1970, China's first satellite, Dongfanghong-1, transmitted "The East is Red" the most popular song at the time from orbit.

But this time, songs and other musical pieces would be broadcast from a distance that is several hundred times farther than Dongfanghong-1, Huang said.

Another difference is that the "playlist" on Chang'e-1 will be chosen by the public.

With support of the Chinese Musicians Association, the centre under Huang's commission publicized on Friday a list of 152 titles mostly traditional Chinese songs and opera selections.

The centre asked the public to select their 30 favourite songs from the candidates. They can also post their own additions to the list, Huang said.

Voting can be made online at the website, or through the mail using coupons and information published in the July 17 issue of the China TV Guide.

Among the candidates are folk songs from Taiwan like "Mount Ali Girls," 1980s hit songs from Hong Kong such as "My Chinese Heart," and ethnic minority tunes including "The Mongolian."

Beijing resident Huang Bo said she believes that recommending music for the satellite will draw more public attention to the otherwise relatively unfamiliar scientific activity.

In addition to traditional songs such as "My Motherland," Huang said she also favoured more modern tunes, such as popular songs from Hong Kong.
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