At the beginning of August the choir gave the opening concert of the International Choral Festival in the National Centre for Performing Arts in Beijing (known as ‘The Egg’ ) as well as concerts in the main concert halls in Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
The tour featured in the British Council’s UK Now 2012 festival of British Arts in China. We received standing ovations at the concerts but perhaps of even more significance, the Beijing concert was streamed live on the internet and there was a six-minute piece on CCTV which was broadcast throughout the country. It can be seen on HTTP://ENGLISH.CNTV.CN running from 4.28-10.40 T.
We understand that we reached several million people through the internet and TV, and there was also a video featuring us on all the central Metro stations.
In addition, Stephen Darlington spoke at two receptions. The first, in Beijing was hosted by the Beijing-based China-Oxford Centre for International Health Research and co-ordinated by Dr. Xuyu Jin, the Oxford based surgeon.
Representatives from the British Embassy and British Council were also in attendance. Attendees included Minister Rui-Chung DUAN the former Minister of Science and Technology who was the Chinese Chief Negotiator for entering the WTO treaty, Minister Jianguo ZHANG, currently Deputy Minister for Human Resources and Social Security and the Director of State Administration for Foreign Experts Affairs and Ms Yueling QIU, the Director General of Beijing Customs. The second reception was organised by the Oxford alumni office in Hong Kong, and features in the latest ‘China Thinking’ bulletin.