WASHINGTON, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) held a Chinese Lunar New Year gala on Tuesday at its headquarters in Washington, D.C., featuring Chinese folk dances and traditional music, as well as Korean and Vietnamese traditional performances.
In an opening remark, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde greeted the audience with "Happy New Year" and "Happy Lantern Festival" in Chinese, winning a warm applause. She said she was told that the Year of the Pig is a year of "health, wealth and prosperity," and would like to send her best wishes for the new year to IMF employees and others present.
Tuesday was the Chinese Lantern Festival, the final day of the half-month traditional Chinese New Year celebrations. The festival marks the first full moon of the new lunar year, and Chinese people usually enjoy a type of sweet glutinous rice dumping, a symbol of family reunion.
The performances included Chinese folk dances, Chinese traditional music, poetry reading and singing, Vietnamese traditional drum dance, and Korean traditional dance and percussion, attracting a crowd of over 500 people.
The gala was hosted by IMF Chinese Staff Association, and was supported by the organization's diversity & inclusion office, Vietnamese Staff Association, Korean Staff Association and the office of the Executive Director for China.
Also on that day, Jin Zhongxia, executive director for China at the IMF, and employees of his office dressed up in various Peking Opera costumes and held a reception to celebrate the Lantern Festival, highlighting calligraphy activity and traditional Chinese food, including glutinous rice dumplings stuffed with red bean paste.