WASHINGTON, Feb. 11 (Xinhua) -- Hundreds of Chinese and American students performed traditional Chinese music, folk songs and dances at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts here on Monday evening to celebrate the Spring Festival, or the Chinese Lunar New Year.
Student ensembles from Tsinghua University High School, Zhongguancun No. 3 Primary School, Chengdu Yulin Primary School, the American Chinese School and a few other schools joined the gala, which is also an international campus arts festival.
Wang Dongyu, a Peking Opera singer from Tsinghua University High School, told Xinhua that she is mostly excited about the performance despite feeling a little nervous. "It's such a grand stage, I am so proud to present traditional Peking Opera to American audiences," Wang said.
Hu Jun, a conductor and composer of the school's Golden Sail Symphony Orchestra, said since the group's debut in the United States in 2013, he has seen an increasing understanding of traditional Chinese music among U.S. audiences.
"At first they were just curious, and later on, they would ask us questions, and gradually know more about it, and some of them began to like it more," Hu told Xinhua.
Hu's orchestra also performed the theme song of "Mission Impossible" with traditional Chinese instruments, which was intriguing for many members of the audience, especially young Americans.
"Young people can bond over music. Through constant music communication among the young, the friendship between China and the United States will grow deeper," Hu said.
The gala also included programs from some Chinese artists and troupes, as well as a Russian dance ensemble.
The Kennedy Center has been celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year with various activities. The Guangdong National Orchestra Ensemble and Guangdong Arts Troupe performed at the center on Thursday and Friday respectively, and a Chinese New Year Family Day on Saturday, featuring traditional Chinese arts and crafts, attracted over 7,000 people.