Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, Chinese president and chairman of the Central Military Commission, on December 24th wrote back to artists of China Oriental Performing Arts Group, encouraging them to earnestly study and disseminate the spirit of the 20th CPC National Congress, and make new contributions to building a socialist country with strong culture.
Xi said in the letter that this year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of Central Song and Dance Troupe and 60th anniversary of the founding of Oriental Song and Dance Troupe, two predecessors of China Oriental Performing Arts Group. "On this occasion, I would like to extend my warm congratulations and sincere greetings to you and all the cast and crew," Xi said.
Xi pointed out that, over the years, you have conscientiously implemented the Party's principles and policies on literature and art, produced many excellent works, made positive contributions to the prosperity and development of the performing arts, and to cultural exchanges with foreign countries, and become an important "cultural envoy" and a bright "cultural card" of New China. Generations of artists stay true to their original aspirations and keep their missions in mind. They sing for the times and dance for the people, demonstrating their missions and responsibilities as artists, Xi said.
Xi said that he hoped that the group will further study, publicize and implement the spirit of the 20th CPC National Congress, adhere to people-centered orientation in creating art works, seek integrity and high standard in pursuit of art, uphold fundamental principles and break new ground. Xi also said that he hoped that the group will fully demonstrate the mainstream values of the new era and the vigor of the Chinese people in singing and dancing performances, so as to make new contributions to the prosperity of performing arts, to building cultural confidence and strength, and to developing China into a socialist country with strong culture.
China Oriental Performing Arts Group developed mainly out of Central Song and Dance Troupe, which was established in December 1952, and Oriental Song and Dance Troupe, which was established in January 1962. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the group has created and performed a number of widely acclaimed cultural and artistic works, such as The Splendor of China, Dance & Music Chinese Stories - Twelve Chinese Zodiacs, Poetic Dance: The Journey of a Legendary Landscape Painting and Teacher Guimei.
Recently, 10 artists from the group wrote to General Secretary Xi Jinping to report their achievements in cultural and artistic creation over the past 10 years in the new era, and express their determination to stay true to their original aspiration and missions as well as better tell stories about China and make China's voice heard through art.