ISLAMABAD: Saba Irfan, a housewife in the Pakistani capital of Islamabad, watched a performance of a Chinese troupe to celebrate Pakistan’s Independence Day on Aug. 14 with locals.
“Since my childhood I have been taught at home and school that there is no closer friend of Pakistan than China and the Pak-China friendship is enduring and incomparable. The Chinese have always shared our joys and sorrows with us like true friends and I am very happy they came again today to strengthen the bond of friendship,” Irfan told Xinhua after watching the performance.
The performance was held by the Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA), in an auditorium packed to capacity by an enthusiastic and rapturous audience which appreciated every performance of their Chinese guests by clapping and screaming at the top of their lungs.
Irfan, said that as compared to Pakistani stage performances, Chinese performances are more ‘colourful.’
“Their dresses are very beautiful, my children liked their brightly coloured dresses.”
She said that Chinese are very hard working people and this quality can easily be judged by their performances on stage. “I take my children to watch Chinese performances because I want them to be confident and hard working like them. China is a great source of inspiration for us, I always tell my children to work hard like the Chinese.”
A 32-member Chinese troupe performed at the Independence Day event. Pakistani and Chinese artistes presented national songs, folk tunes and dances. The artistes also presented music and dances of China as well as performing national songs of Pakistan.
Irfan Junaid, a pharmacist by profession, was also in the audience who watched the Chinese troupe performing on the occasion of Pakistan’s Independence Day commented, “It was not just a function, or a performance of art and music and dance, but a symbol of great friendship between Pakistan and China,” Junaid told Xinhua.
He said that though there is a language barrier between Pakistan and China and the audience could not understand the meaning of the lyrics sung by the Chinese performers, but, despite that, everyone enjoyed the performance.
Pakistan’s Acting Minister for Information Ali Zafar also attended the event. He thanked the Chinese artistes for being part of the Independence Day celebration. “This gesture by the Chinese reflects the level of friendship and understanding between the two nations.”
Zhao Xiaoqiang, deputy director of department of culture in China’s Shaanxi province, meanwhile, told Xinhua that this was the first time he and the troupe had visited Pakistan, adding that he was overwhelmed with the warm welcome and friendship between the two peoples.
“This is a very important day, Independence Day, and we are so honoured to join this celebration, and I feel that everyone is excited.”
He said that cultural exchanges are very important for the people of two countries, as it will help them understand each other better. “The exchanges will facilitate the feeling of friendship between the two countries.”
Zhao told Xinhua that they visited Pakistan to share the joy of Pakistan’s Independence Day with its people, and will also invite Pakistani artistes to join them in the 5th Silk Road Art Festival in Shaanxi province.
The Pakistani audience was very happy to see Chinese performers among them. They said that sharing their Independence Day with the artistes of a brotherly country had doubled the joy of the day for them.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2018.