The Lastest Invation into North Korea? K-pop!

According to the website donga.com  The K-pop Wave that has been sweeping
Europe and all of Asia has jumped the fence into North Korea.

Can this be the diplomatic event that could
bring the peninsula back together? I don’t know but I am happy to watch them
try….for hours and hours…

Heres the scoop:

South Korean pop music, or K-pop, has reportedly
started to gain popularity in North Korea.Despite a stern crackdown by the North’s security authorities, many people in
the North led by the children of high-income families are learning the latest
South Koreanfolk songs and dance, news reports say.Introducing this trend, the U.S.-based Radio Free Asia said Tuesday, “Names
of South Korean dance groups, such as Girls’ Generation’ and Big Bang are no
longer unheard of in North Korea.”

A Chinese trader who frequently visits North Korea told the broadcaster,
“South Korean dance fever is sweeping young people in Pyongyang,” adding, “A
homemaker of a well-heeled family asked me to get a Girls’ Generation CD to her
recently.”

The Radio Free Asia report said dance is so popular among children of the
North`s rich and powerful in their teens and 20s living around Pyongyang’s
Junggu or Daedong River districts. Rumors also suggest that “those who cannot
dance disco cannot play with other children.”

Private lessons for dance have gotten popular, and tutors even teach dance
and singing at homes and exercise rooms for 20 U.S. dollars per month.

The trader said, “These days, homemakers of rich households don`t tell their
children to learn the accordion or another instrument, and are more interested
in teaching modern dance entailing both dance and singing.”

The children of senior North Korean officials who attend prestigious schools
such as Kim Il Sung University and Pyongyang Commercial University are enjoying
South Korean and Western music by dodging the relatively loose crackdown on
them, he said.

“Hallyu,” or the Korean Wave of South Korean pop culture, has been repeatedly
confirmed by North Korean defectors. With more South Korean dramas and music CDs
flowing into the North via the North Korea-China border, chances are high that
famous South Korean singers, including girl groups, will enjoy increased
visibility, experts say.

An official at Hanawon, a state-run training center assisting North Korean
defectors to settle in the South, said, “Many North Korean students really like
South Korean songs and dance, and they easily follow South Korea’s singing and
dancing,” adding, “Dance performances staged in the trainees’ completion
ceremony at Hanawon is just as impressive as performances by South Korean
singers or students.”

North Korean authorities are stepping up their crackdown on hallyu, with one
saying, “The inflow of external trends, including the Korean Wave, should be
blocked.”

Pyongyang apparently believes that external winds of this nature could pose a
stumbling block to consolidating the structure of power succession for heir
apparent Kim Jong Un.

In a visit to Shinuiju early last month, North Korean leader Kim Jong Il
reportedly criticized his country`s fashion and social disorder by saying,
“North Pyongan Province has become a dance hall of capitalism.” He then ordered
a stronger crackdown.

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I love when I accidentally find great music! NeeHaoMag & Beilei

While reading on a new magazine i am enjoying NeeHaoMag I found this awesome artist Beilei. So I searched on Youtube and found her videos there. She is awesome! Check her out!!

China Invests In Filmmaking, For Image And Profit : NPR

I just read an interesting article, China Invests In Filmmaking, For Image And Profit : NPR about the Chinese government investing big dollars into the film industry so that it can promote a film that shares both Chinese culture and large box office dollars like “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon” did.

Unfortunately, the truly great movies out of China are not your kung fu epics that the American audience eats up. If it doesn’t contain high-flying, crazy fight scenes or bad guys vs good guys through a crazy antics, it wont catch the American eye.

The average American doesnt look for good stories and dramas to come out of China. They are afraid that the story is something that will be lost in translation or that you need to read a history book to follow the plot.

Both of which are not true.

Some of the best movies i have ever seen are from China. Yes, if you understand a little more of the history of the country and culture it gives you that something extra that others may notice the subtle tones. But I dont catch the stuff some get in big blockbusters in the US either.

My hope is that more movies come out of china and grace our silver screens (well i guess it is more lcd screens now) and share the beauty that is Chinese culture.

If you would like to see more about Chinese culture and quality movies out of China here are my 10 favorite.(not in any order because they all are amazing) They are available on netflix and if you want many are chopped into 10 minute sections on Youtube as well.

 

1) Raise the Red Lantern

 

2) Farewell my Concubine

 

3) To live

 

 

4) World without Thieves

 

5) Balzac and the little seamstress

 

6) Lust Caution (warning much nudity and sex scenes) (Wang leehom *sigh*)

 

7) Shower

 

8) Curse of the Golden Flower (Jay Chou *sigh*)

 

9) The Message

 

10) eat drink man women (from and about Taiwan but family is family in china and it is very good way to see life from that perspective.)

I am often asked … Why do I love China … « Wandering Waiguoren 漫步外国人

from :I am often asked … Why do I love China … « Wandering Waiguoren 漫步外国人.

I am often asked why china and why do I love it so much. Do i hate america? no has nothing to do with my love of my country…it is hard to explain but I recently had to write an essay for my scholarship that helps give you an idea why and how much I truly love China.

***

 

China and Chinese culture has been a love of mine since I was 5 years old. I used to read stories of a far away land with beauty and mystery. At the time I dreamed of traveling to China and walking on the Great Wall, but at the time it was not possible.

When I came to The University of Akron in 2008, shortly after the Beijing Olympics, I began to take any course that I could on China. I made a big leap and tried Chinese as my foreign language and fell deeper in love with the country and it filled my dreams.

Chinese was very hard but extremely rewarding. I began listening to mandarin music and watching Chinese movies. I wanted to read, see and listen to anything to do with China. I worked hard because I wanted to achieve higher knowledge of the language and the culture.

In May 2010, I was given an opportunity to live my dream of visiting China. During a two-week stay I was able to see amazing cities like Shanghai, Kaifeng, Xi’an and Beijing. I have never been so happy in my life! I saw magnificent places I had only read about in books. I was in awe of the history I was in contact with. I savored every moment I could in places like the Pudong in Shanghai; the Daxiangguo Temple in Kaifeng; the Teracotta Army and the city wall in Xi’an; and the Great Wall and Tiananmen Square in Beijing.

I want to take my study of the Chinese language and cultures even further and teach others about the beauty of it. To do so, I would greatly be honored to partake in the year long study of the Chinese language in China. I deeply feel that in order to create a more harmonious world we should learn about other countries and cultures in order to understand them.

I believe that we as Americans cannot continue to force our ideals on other countries. As citizens of the world we need to embrace other cultures and build bridges of learning between the countries. By studying Chinese language and culture, I hope to help build those bridges of understanding between our nations.

Knowledge is the greatest tool and Chinese is a tool I hope to master and eventually pass on to others.

You can ask anyone that knows me about what my passion is and they will abundantly say it is Chinese language and culture. I am the vice-president of the Chinese Cultural Society at The University of Akron, a volunteer at many Chinese culture events, and have written about Chinese culture on our school paper. I am an active promoter of Chinese language, not only at The University of Akron, but in our local community. My hope is that I can help continue the bridge between our countries for many years to come.

Learning Chinese language has also opened many doors for me. I have met many wonderful people since I began my studies. I was also able to turn my love of Chinese language and culture into a part-time student assistant position at our universities Confucius Institute. There I had the pleasure of assisting on many events including out campus’ “China Week” and “Chinese Summer Camp.”

I also spoke to high-school students who are also studying Chinese during “High School China Day” sponsored by our Confucius Institute. Along with another Chinese Student, we taught different study methods that will attract a younger audience. My classmate and I both discovered that through Mandarin pop music we could improve our pronunciation and our vocabulary while enjoying new music and learning about the popular culture of China. At the end of the High School China Day our students performed a popular song for everyone. It was sung in Mandarin and everyone enjoyed it very much. Our class was quiet popular and we were asked to do it again for summer camp.

When awarded this scholarship I will be a model student and ambassador for both The University of Akron and the Confucius Institute. I will maintain the highest level of behavior and will continuously promote Henan University, Confucius Institute, and Chinese Language.

I feel this once-in-a-life time opportunity will provide me with the skills to improve my Chinese well beyond a traditional American classroom setting. Without the opportunity to practice Chinese every day, I fear I will begin to lose what I worked so hard to gain. I wish to go as high as I can in my proficiency in Chinese language and feel this is the best tool to do so. By immersion into the culture and country I am able to observe and learn things that cannot be fully expressed in class, all the small things that people who are communicating do when speaking to one another. These are the things that make a Chinese speaker truly a master.

Thank you for this wonderful opportunity.

Hoping to raise the red curtain

Hoping to raise the red curtain.

 

 

BEIJING – China screens only 20 foreign films, mostly from the United States, in theaters every year, but even fewer Chinese films are allowed in US cinemas. Those that make it often fall into two genres: kungfu dramas such as Zhang Yimou’s Hero or John Woo’s Red Cliff, and art-house fare such as Chen Kaige’s Farewell My Concubine. But even these are seldom shown in mainstream theaters.

A veteran Chinese producer has set about to change this, by targeting a market so far ignored – the Chinese diaspora in North America. Jiang Yanming’s China Lion Distribution has distributed six Chinese films in the United States and Canada since its establishment in September 2010.

The LA-based company is a joint venture between Jiang, president and majority shareholder, and New Zealand-based Incubate, owned by Australian distributor Milt Barlow. Both are veterans with more than 20 years experience in the motion-picture business.

According to data from the US Census Bureau, by the end of 2009 more than 3.8 million people of Chinese descent were living in the US. Statistics show that this figure for Canada was 1.3 million by the end of 2006.

Additionally, there are growing numbers of Chinese nationals working and studying in North America.

With an exclusive deal with AMC, the second-largest theater chain in the US that owns about 6,000 screens, China Lion is targeting the Chinese diaspora as its prime audience.

Jiang is well aware of the partnership’s potential value, as is evident from AMC’s partnership with Bollywood, aimed at the Indian diaspora in the US, whose numbers were put at an estimated 2.8 million in 2009 by the US Census Bureau.

“Indian films now bring in $6 million to AMC every year, but an Indian film used to gross only thousands of dollars four years ago,” he tells China Daily. “I am prepared for an operating loss for up to two years to build the market. We have learned from the experience of Indian films that they found their audience when they arrived in theaters with regularity and met filmgoers’ expectations.”

China Lion is the exclusive supplier of Chinese films to AMC and oversees the outreach and marketing to filmgoers, while AMC provides the in-theater standees and runs the trailers.

There’s no dearth of films, though, with China churning out 526 feature films last year. Jiang, who boasts decades-long connections to the Chinese film industry, has distribution agreements with many of the country’s leading studios, including Huayi Brothers, Shanghai Film Group and Bona Films.

Robert J. Lenihan, AMC’s president of programming, told Film Journal International that the partnership is “another manifestation of AMC’s effort to provide a bigger and more diverse array of entertainment”.

“We believe that if we continue targeting the various groups, they’ll continue to be very supportive,” he was quoted as saying. “We want to be a community center.”

The joint venture’s latest move is to release The Founding of a Party, a film that celebrates the 90th anniversary of the Communist Party of China. It will be screened in North America on June 17, the first Friday after its China premiere on June 15.

The film gathers more than 100 well-known stars in Chinese-speaking regions, such as Liu Ye, Chow Yun-fat and Zhao Benshan.

“I think Chinese audiences would like to see such a star-studded film while North American viewers, who know little about the Communist Party of China, may also go to theaters out of curiosity,” Jiang says.

However, not all of Jiang’s efforts have been box-office winners. The first film China Lion distributed was, actually, a disappointment.

In October 2010, only one month after the company’s establishment, Jiang distributed Feng Xiaogang’s Aftershock, a tearjerker about the 1976 Tangshan earthquake that killed about 240,000 in China, in two dozens theaters in the US and Canada. The film grossed an amazing 673 million yuan ($104 million) in China, but only $61,000 in North America.

“It failed at the box office,” Jiang says. “An important reason was it hit US theaters three months after its premiere in China. Many people had already seen it on the Internet or on DVD.”

In a bid to avoid another flop Jiang has since ensured films are released the same time as in China. His biggest success so far has been If You are the One 2, a romantic comedy also by Feng. Starring beloved comedian Ge You and big screen seductress Shu Qi, it was released on Dec 24, the same day as its China premiere, and grossed a decent $427,000.

Jiang plans to release 15 to 24 films a year, in 20 to 50 theaters in more than 10 cities in North America. To date, six different titles have each gone to about two-dozen AMC screens in cities, such as New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco in the US and Toronto and Ottawa, in Canada. The company has also teamed up with Cineplex in Vancouver and Consolidated Theaters in Hawaii.

Although more Chinese producers are approaching him, Jiang says choosing an appropriate film can be tricky.

“Audience preferences are hard to tell,” he says. “I thought entertaining films with big stars were surefire choices, but Andy Lau and Gong Li’s What Women Want, a Chinese remake of Nancy Meyers’ Mel Gibson/Helen Hunt comedy, saw a rather modest box office return of $130,000. We are still studying cinema-goers’ appetites and cultivating their habit of going to theaters to see Chinese films.”

Jiang is also keen to win over the non-Chinese audience but sees language as a major hurdle.

“We are aware that they do not like subtitled films,” he says.

Although kungfu flicks, with less dialogue and more action, remain a favorite with foreign audiences, Jiang does not want to limit his choices.

“What I am doing is business. But more than that it is also an effort to promote Chinese cinema overseas,” he says. “I want to show different kinds of Chinese films.”

He is also cooperating with Confucius Institutes, the worldwide nonprofit public institutions aimed at promoting Chinese language and culture, by offering discounted tickets of Chinese films to North American students.

“Students at Confucius Institutes are interested in Chinese culture. They can understand our films and help popularize them among a larger population,” Jiang says.

In addition, he is exploring co-productions, which will feature stories relevant to both China and the US. On the company’s agenda are stories about a Chinese karate champion who lives in the US and a war epic about the US Army Observer Group in Yan’an, sent there in 1944 to coordinate the struggle against Japanese aggression.

“These films will be in English for North America and in Chinese for China,” he says.

“So, both audiences can relate to them.”

China Daily

(China Daily 06/03/2011 page1)

 

‘China fever’ sweeps US tourism industry – People’s Daily Online

‘China fever’ sweeps US tourism industry – People’s Daily Online.

The International Pow Wow 2011, hosted by the U.S. Travel Association, kicked off in San Francisco on May 23. 

More than 5,500 delegates from 70 countries took part in the three-day convention, and China’s contingent to the conference included more than 100 groups. The annual International Pow Wow started in 1969, and the number of “buyers” from China hit an all-time high this year. 

An increasing Chinese presence can be noticed at the biggest international tourism trade fair in the United States. According to a report issued by the U.S. Department of Commerce, the number of Chinese tourists visiting the United States will increase by 232 percent in the next five years. 

An insider in the Chinese tourism industry from Kunming, capital of China’s Yunnan Province, said the operators of the U.S. tourism industry believe in “loyal customers” and have a long-term view and a sense of quality. In contrast, Chinese tourism operators seem to be anxious to achieve quick success and get instant benefits, leading them to make missteps, such as overemphasizing free tour fares. 

“There is no free lunch in the world. Some tour groups visiting the United States reduce the tour fare, but they give up many important attractions that require entrance tickets. This will lower the tour quality,” said the insider.

Some people in the U.S. travel industry noted that travel is both an interaction and a kind of study. For example, tipping for services is considered common practice in the United States. The American public will consciously stand in line as long as there are more than three people. In addition, not smoking in public places has become a social convention in the United States. In respect to these issues, the organizers of Chinese tour groups need to make preparations, and Chinese tourists also should be self-disciplined in order to avoid unhappy incidents.

With the expansion of China’s outbound tourism market aimed at the United States, many tourism insiders are looking for more tourist products. “More and more Chinese tourists seek unique experiences during their tour, which is the inevitable trend of the market,” said a Chinese “buyer” at the trade fair.

By Ye Xin, People’s Daily Online

Reading Patterns Changing — Beijing Review

April 23 was the 16th World Book and Copyright Day, also known as the World Book Day. Reading-related problems have once again attracted people’s attention. Today, living a life with an increasingly rapid pace, most people are occupied by work, household duties, surfing the Internet and other activities. How can they manage to read? How is increasingly popular electronic reading changing people’s reading habits? When people are gradually inclined to read for practical use, how can they keep on reading for their interest?

Who’s reading?

Before the World Book Day, a survey conducted by Guangming Daily showed readers in China are not limited to intellectual and student groups any longer. Readers now cover people of different occupations and age groups. Their reading aims are different, but are often closely related to their own lives.

College and middle school students are still the main force of readers. Books they prefer are of two types: Chinese and foreign classics, and study-related ones. Guo Dong, a freshman at Renmin University of China, says every day he spends at least two hours reading. “I choose to read books related to my study to broaden my knowledge. I also read famous literature, both Chinese and foreign to improve my taste.”

For most adults, work-related books and books about health and lifestyle are first choices.

Li Guosheng, who works as a physics teacher in Shuangliu Middle School in Chengdu, capital of southwest China’s Sichuan Province, said he would set aside one or two hours every day to read books after teaching.

“At present, I am reading books on how to be a good teacher. These books both help me to improve my teaching skills and give me relaxation,” Li said.

Han Xue, an office worker in east China’s Shandong Province, said, “I am both a clerk and an editor for the company’s publications, so I need to read lots of professional books. For example, books on news writing, editing, and photography. And, as a parent, I also need to read books about parenting and those related to health.”

Retirees compose another major group of readers. They like choosing books freely according to their interest.

Qu Xian’en, a Beijing citizen, is a retired teacher. He says there is nothing happier than reading. “I have been reading for more than 40 years. I read history to learn about China’s past and read biographies to learn about the lives of masters. From books I can understand the joys of life.”

Liu Bin, a retired former official of the Central Government, said, “Before my retirement, I seldom had time for reading. Now, I would like to read history books and books about culture, art and calligraphy.”

Full Story:Reading Patterns Changing — Beijing Review.

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