Folk artists across China gather at Majie Quyi Fair in China's Henan

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-17 07:34:03|Editor: Yurou
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Folk artist Yu Shuxi (C), 99, comes to the artist center established by Zhang Mantang in Majie Village of Baofeng County in Pingdingshan, central China's Henan Province, Feb. 16, 2019. Each year after Spring Festival, Majie village in central China's Henan Province is visited by folk artists from across the country. The folk art fair there has lasted for 700 years. The event is said to originate from a prestigious folk artist in the village, whose many disciples gathered to celebrate his birthday in 1316. The birthday celebration later evolved into a folk art fair. Chinese folk art, or Quyi, has many forms, including ballad singing, story telling and cross talk, etc. The Quyi fair presents an opportunity for the audience to establish contact with their favorite artists and pay them to perform. Majie village has about 5,000 residents, but it hosts more than a thousand folk artists every year. Many villagers volunteer to provide free food and lodgings for artists during the fair. The 66-year-old Zhang Mantang, a businessman, returned to Majie in 2004 when the fair was losing popularity. In 2006 he built 12 rooms, and bought bunk beds and cushions to host the guests. Over the years, Zhang has spent hundreds of thousands of yuan protecting the arts. In 2006, the Majie Quyi Fair was inscribed on the first national intangible cultural heritage list. (Xinhua/Li Jianan)

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