On February 4, a group of Science China Corner students from St Margaret College Secondary School Verdala attended the Happy Chinese New Year Concert 2024, held at Sir Temi Zammit Hall, University of Malta.
The students, Axelkees Yesyosmar Massa, Yanique Gambin and Aimee Bugeja, were accompanied by senior science teacher and founder of the Science China Corner, Martin Azzopardi, sdc and Jacqueline Schembri. Two other students, Neil Schembri and Haley Schembri, from a Church school affiliated with the Science China Corner, also attended the event.
The concert featured the Shenzhen Opera and Dance Theatre Chorus and included a mixture of Chinese poetry and traditional instruments, Chinese folklore arrangements, Western choral pieces and modern Chinese melodies. The concert ended with a rendition of the Maltese folkloristic song, Il-Festa.
The Shenzhen Opera and Dance Theatre Chorus was established in September 2019. It is conducted by Mu Wenhao and consists of 51 members, including 14 sopranos, 12 mezzo-sopranos, 11 tenors and 14 baritones. It upholds the principles of “Chinese manner, contemporary style and international vision” and aspires to be a top-tier professional ensemble with international recognition, contributing to the advancement and prosperity of Chinese music culture.
The founder teacher of the Science China Corner, Martin Azzopardi, highlighted how such events enhance multiculturalism and deepen students’ knowledge in Chinese culture.
One of the students, Yanique Gambin, said he was “amazed” by the perfomers’ talent and called it “a perfect show”. He noted how the chorus not only performed traditional Chinese music but also music from the rest of the world. He mostly appreciated their performance of Il-Festa, which students from the school also performed in China during a cultural visit last summer.
Teacher Martin Azzopardi and his students expressed gratitude to the Chinese Embassy in Malta, the China Cultural Centre in Malta and the Shenzhen Municipal Bureau of Culture Radio, Television, Tourism and Sports, while conveying their best wishes for a Happy Chinese New Year of the Dragon, which is being celebrated on February 10.