The Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Kolkata held the music exchange programs at Rabindra Bharati University and Visva-Bharati University on 15 and 16 March 2017 respectively, with enthusiastic participation by the teachers and students of both universities.
Mr. Ma spoke on the occasions, saying that both the universities have deep association with the Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, and have turned out large numbers of graduates in literature, arts, music and drama. Cheena Bhavana of Visva Bharati University, in particular, has done a great deal for the cultural exchanges between China and India. Enhancing friendship and cultural exchanges, as persistently urged by Tagore, remains an integral part of the bilateral relationship. The visit by the musicians with China's Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM) to India, itself being a result of successful exchanges and understanding between the peoples of the two nations, will contribute further to development of the relations.
Professor Swapan K. Datta, Vice Chancellor of Visva-Bharati, Dr. Avijit Banerjee, Head of the Department of the Chinese Language and Culture (Cheena Bhavana), and Dr. Pushpita Mukherjee, Dean of the Dance Department of Rabindra Bharati University, said that they welcomed the delegations and were thankful to the Chinese musicians for bringing the rich Chinese music to their campuses. They mentioned that the exchanges can not only increase the knowledge of the Indian teachers and students about the Chinese music, but also bring the people of the two countries closer.
The Chinese musicians played the traditional Chinese music instruments as well as such instruments as violin, viola and cello. Madame Liu Yuening, the famous Chinese santoor maestro, presented a resounding performance along with two Indian Tabla musicians.
The teachers and students from RBU presented the traditional dances of India, including Kuchipudi from Andra Pradesh, Kathakali from Kerala and the tandava dance, and played such percussion instruments as tabla, dholak, manjeera and kanjeera for the audience. The teachers and students from Cheena Bhavana also performed songs by Tagore and dances based on Tagore's composition, which left the Chinese artists with a deep impression.
The brilliant performance by the Chinese and Indian artists won rapturous applause from the audience. Towards the end of the programs, the Chinese delegation interacted with the students and teachers of the two universities and learnt about the Indian style of music and dance.
Consul General Ma and the Chinese musicians also had a tour of the campus of Visva Bharati University, and were impressed with the under-tree classrooms there.
Reporters from the mainstream media were present to cover the event and filed reports.
On the evening of 15 March 2017, Consul General Ma Zhanwu met and interacted at his residence with the members of the delegation and three Indian artists, namely Pundit Tarun Bhattacharya, Santoor maestreo, Pundit Sudhankar Banerjee, tabla maestreo, and Ms Sanchita Attachment, the famous Indian dancer. The dancer also gave a demonstration of classic Indian dance on the occasion.