Lancashire school children shine in Chinese talent show

27 February 2019

UCLan Confucius Institute hosts cultural event

Primary and secondary school children from across Lancashire have been showing off their performance skills at a special Chinese talent show organised by the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

Pupils from eight local schools were joined by two exchange schools from China to put on a talent contest that included dancing, singing, Kung Fu and Tai-Chi.

The UK-China Talent Competition at UCLan’s Venue 53 was designed by the UCLan Confucius Institute to allow the pupils to show off their knowledge of Chinese culture and see the traditional shows students in China take part in. Mayor of Preston Councillor Trevor Hart and his daughter Mayoress Sarah McAlea attended the event.

Highlights included singing in Mandarin, playing traditional Chinese instruments and performing the Five Animal Tai-Chi exercise.

"We’ve all been very impressed with the efforts the young people have gone to. They’ve put on a fantastic show and learned so much in the process."

Assunta Russo, 11, from Our Lady and St Gerard’s Catholic Primary School in Lostock Hall was part of the Tai-Chi demonstration. She said: “I was really nervous before we went on stage but then I really got into it. I’ve been to China with school and really enjoyed the whole experience.”

Eoin Laird, 12, from All Hallows Catholic High School was part of a group of singers who performed two songs in Mandarin.

“We only started learning them in January and six lessons later we were on stage. It was great though and it’s been really interesting learning more about China and speaking a new language” he said.

Pupils from two schools in Fuzhou, South East China, who have been staying with local host families also took part. Daniel Lin, a 13-year-old pupil at Fuzhou No16 Middle School, said: “I performed Chinese Kung Fu. I am very proud to come to England to improve my language skills and meet English families.”

The event followed several weeks of Chinese New Year celebrations hosted by the UCLan Confucius Institute, which promotes Chinese language and culture across the county through public events, school visits and taking schools on exchange trips to China.

Director of the UCLan Confucius Institute Feixia Yu said: “We’ve all been very impressed with the efforts the young people have gone to. They’ve put on a fantastic show and learned so much in the process.”

Councillor Hart added: “Preston is very proud to have strong links with China and today’s performances were very inspirational. Well done to everybody that took part, you were all truly amazing.”

View images from the event on the UCLan Flickr gallery