The Chinese Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is a tradition in Chinese culture. It’s a time to celebrate with family and friends.
Laura Terry, direcotr of ETSU’s Multicultural Affairs, spent the summer arranging to use The Baptist Collegiate Ministries for the festival.
In preparation for the upcoming festival, while the students were home in China for the summer, they bought gifts to give to the players in the games.
Just before the festival, Terry went with the students to Walmart to shop for supplies they would need, including food items.
“It was really amazing to understand them,” Terry said. “They understand and know how to do what we do; they’re great to work with.”
The festival began with an introduction of the festival, one speaker spoke in Chinese to the group while the other translated to English.
The first performance of the night was Ruyu Xing singing ‘Silence’. While they introduced the second act, although the words were in Chinese, you could tell they made jokes through body language.
Haoxuan Zhao and Frank Long sang a duet, ‘Remember.’ In this moment, music is universal.
The audience could feel the raw emotion in the words, and the melody of the instruments was beautiful.
In between performances games were played. One game was called Universal, a game similar to the common game of ‘telephone’ where one person starts off with a phrase or sentence, and then repeats it across a line of people before seeing how much the original sentence changed once it reaches the final person.
The game played at the festival was similar, but instead of telling a phrase, they acted out a word.
As one person put it, “This is nothing to do with language. You don’t need to speak at all.”
The five people in line put their fingers above their head and did invisible air quotes and jumped up and down, miming a bunny. The last person guesses correct and the team all wins prizes.
They play another round, this time with a crab. They mimic claws and the last person asks, “Is it a crab?”
The next game was a number drawing. When you walked through the door, you were given a tag with a number. This is an easy way to win a prize. All you have to do is listen to your number. They called three numbers and then another act came on stage.
Zhicheng Zhang did a “Chinese Talk Show” which is essentially a comedic act. Even though the show was in Chinese, body language dictated humor, as well as several people laughing.
The next act was a piano solo called Toccata by Mengfei Yang. Her fingers moved rapidly or slowly on the piano, sounding beautiful.
More games were played, musical chairs and the number tags, and crush the balloons, where two people go back to back and try to pop a balloon.
There were three teams: the first team instantly popped the balloon, the third close behind, and the middle team struggling. They switched out balloons in the end.
A dance performance, “Cry Cry” by Xindi Dang, and another song, “The Meaning of Travel” by Wenjing Yu, and “Ten Years” by Zhaoheng Hu concluded the performances.
The festival closed with an invitation to attend the Chinese Church Saturday at 9 a.m., and an authentic Chinese dinner.