Asian Studies Outreach Program
A Day of International Music, Dance and Friendship
The College of Education and Social Services hosted workshops and a performance to celebrate its friendship with the Arts College of Inner Mongolia
- By Jacqueline Drouin
The sun was still rising over Lake Champlain as the delegation of 17 faculty and students from the Performing Arts College of Inner Mongolia University arrived at the University of Vermont for a day filled with workshops, meetings, and a performance at the Ira Allen Chapel. After the students from the Arts College had the chance to experience a traditional UVM's student breakfast, the group made its way to the Music Building where they were greeted by Professor Thomas Toner, Chair of the Music Department and a delegate of the 2012 CESS China program.
Under a red banner that welcomed the Inner Mongolia University delegation to the University of Vermont, Professor Toner spoke of how pleased he was for UVM music and dance students to have an opportunity to learn with student performers from the leading performance college in Inner Mongolia. The next few hours included cultural exchanges in dance as students from the World Dance class practiced the movements of Inner Mongolia dance styles and in return showed the delegation modern American dance steps. In the recital hall, music students from UVM practiced playing the horsehead fiddle with the musicians from Inner Mongolia.
At the lunch and traditional gift exchange at Waterman Manor, Dean Fayneese Miller expressed to Mr. Xiyong Wu, leader of the delegation how glad she was to be able to see the delegation from Inner Mongolia in Vermont, as she had previously met many of them during a program in China and appreciated their friendship with the College and University. The College's commitment to international friendships and understanding includes initiatives such as the 2011 and 2012 Inner Mongolian exchange for UVM faculty and students, and by providing opportunities for the greater Burlington community to experience world class performances by musicians from the Inner Mongolia Arts College.
An audience of over 300 people attended the Inner Mongolia Music and Dance performance, an event that meshed traditional Mongolian throat singing with contemporary music trends in China. The event, hosted by the College of Education and Social Services, concluded with the musicians leading the audience in a chorus of auld lang syne.