On 18th February, the Institute of International Education's Department of the Russian language for international students of Voronezh State University celebrated Spring Festival (Chinese New Year).
The holiday gathered together teachers and interns from Beijing, Sanya, Qingdao, Chongqing, and Shanghai as well as from Tartu and Debrecen. Chinese students headed by a teacher Yekaterina Orekhova, organised a concert where they talked with passion about their homeland and culture and New Year celebrations in particular. The students showed techniques of Tai Chi – ancient martial arts, read poems, and expressed congratulations in Russian and Chinese. The students also organised competitions, quizzes and fortune-telling and had issued a wall newspaper dedicated to the festival.
'Our department has a very good tradition of not only introducing our students and interns to Russian culture but also creating the amicable atmosphere for culture exchange. We are trying to understand what is of value for them and help them feel at home here in Russia, far from their homeland,' said Yekaterina Orekhova.
'Spring Festival is of the same significance for the Chinese as Christmas and New Year are for other cultures,' said Yang Fei.
Chinese students shared their impressions:
'It is very touching that teachers and interns from other countries have come to celebrate the festival with us and share our emotions. It is the first time we have celebrated New Year far away from home and we miss our parents a lot. But here surrounded by our friends we feel less homesick.'
It was an interesting event that brought the audience closer to the mysterious and enigmatic East.