Glitzy gala features foreign faces

Updated: 2011-01-25 07:52

By Xu Lin (China Daily)

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A star-studded multinational cast will make the Spring Festival Global Gala hosted by Beijing Television Station (BTV) stand out among the Spring Festival programs TV stations are preparing.

It will be broadcast on BTV, TVB-8 (Hong Kong) and CTITV (Taiwan) at 7:40 pm on Feb 4, the second day of the lunar new year. Stations in Spain, Sweden and Israel will broadcast the show later.

The 150-minute event features more than 160 foreign artists from about 40 countries and more than 130 Chinese artists.

The dance programs include a performance by Spain's leading flamenco dancer Cristina Hoyos and her group, and traditional Russian and aboriginal Australian dances.

"Audiences from around the world can enjoy the gala's music, dances and magic tricks, as there are no Chinese-language performances," director Shi Tao says.

Glitzy gala features foreign faces

"The bilingual lines of the six hosts and hostesses are easy to understand. Without any language barriers, the gala is like a global carnival, and everyone can have fun."

He says the show mixes Eastern and Western styles in several ways, such as in the costumes and stage designs. Most programs feature Chinese and foreigners performing side-by-side.

David D'Or, known as Israel's most acclaimed modern singer, will sing The Phantom of the Opera. He will also perform the Mongolian folk song Dating at Aobao with Chinese soprano Liu Yuanyuan.

"Liu and I became good friends when we first met before the rehearsal. Although we don't speak the same language, music is a universal language for us," D'Or says.

Another duo comes in the form of famous Canadian singer Lara Fabian and Shang Wenjie, the 2006 winner of the Supergirl TV show. They will sing Fabian's classical French song I Still Believe.

As a huge fan of Fabian, Shang says she is more than excited to share the stage with her idol and that Fabian has taught her during rehearsals.

The 10-year-old vocalist Connie Talbot will sing Over the Rainbow, which helped her 2007 rise to fame on the reality show Britain's Got Talent.

Swedish pianist and composer Robert Wells, and his orchestra, will play from the show's beginning to its end.

Wells dazzled local audiences when he played China Moon for the one-year countdown to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Wells will perform China Moon with local musician Wang Ting, who will play pipa (a four-stringed lute).

"I want to be a good musician to back up all the stars from China and other countries," Wells says.

American magician David Williamson, who has been to China 10 times, agrees with Wells that the country has become like a second home.

"I collaborate with some young talented Chinese magicians each time I come to China," Williamson says.

American country singer Billy Dean will sing Six Days on the Road, which was written by a truck driver.

"Country music, which is easy to sing and remember, is like workingmen's music (for people) such as carpenters and construction workers. I am here to sing a song for the hardworking people in Beijing, who are making the city better," Dean says.

China Daily


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