Radford University Celebrates the Chinese Year of the Monkey

chinese club dancers
Members of the Chinese Club demonstrate the song "The Little Apple" as part of the campus Chinese New Year Celebration at the Covington Center.

Radford University and the New River Valley community gathered to celebrate the Chinese New Year.

On Feb. 20, Radford University’s Chinese Club held its 16th annual Chinese New Year Celebration. The show featured performances from students at Radford University, Virginia Tech and the Blacksburg Chinese School as well as performers from the 15-50 Dance Group and the Evergreen Fellowship Choir, among others. After the performances viewers enjoyed traditional Chinese food at a reception.

For the first time in 16 years, the celebration was held in the Covington Performance Hall. to accommodate the popular event, I-Ping Fu, professor of foreign guage and literature and faculty advisor for the RU Chinese Club, was granted special permission from President Penelope Kyle to utilize the prestigious performance space.

“This would not have been possible without President Kyle, I am very thankful to her for allowing us to utilize the space,” said Fu.

“The Chinese New Year is the biggest holiday in Asia,” added Fu. “We have so many resources around us such as the Blacksburg Chinese School and the Evergreen Choir, it’s wonderful to be able to bring them in and celebrate together.”

Claire Chung, a performer from Blacksburg High School and member of the 15-50 Dance Group, appreciated the opportunity to perform and share her culture. Chung performed a dance titled “Transformation” which she had previously performed at her high school.

“I loved performing this the first time at home and it was great to be able to bring it back here,” said Chung. “It’s so important for me to know about myself, my family and my culture and to be able to share it with so many other people.”

young dancers perform at RU's Chinese New Year celebration

Performers of all ages were featured at RU's recent Chinese New Year celebration.

The annual celebration provides a platform for Chinese-Americans to display their culture while providing students with a fun way to learn about the Chinese culture, according to Chung.

Paul Currant, director of international education, stated that internationalizing Radford University has been one of his main goals. Through events like the Chinese New Year Celebration, Currant said he hopes to provide the Radford students and community with an international experience that is so crucial in today’s globalized environment.

“Gone are the times of not needing to know other cultures,” said Currant. “It’s important for people to know that there are many different ways of eating, dancing and speaking. If we provide students with these opportunities, they are more likely to interact with our international students.”

Next semester, RU Chinese Club will host their annual Mid-Autumn festival as another celebration of Chinese culture.

Mar 1, 2016