By Chelsea Merta
The Chinese Language
Program at IU hosted its annual Chinese Performance Festival beginning at 1:30 p.m.
at Monroe County Public
The family-friendly festival featured live plays and
skits performed by students, as well
"I believe that language learning goes beyond the
classroom," said Jennifer Liu, president of the Chinese
Language Teachers Association and associate professor in
the Department of East Asian
Languages and Cultures. "We encourage our students to
with native speakers and encourage the local Chinese to
be involved with the community. It's a real
encouragement if native speakers can understand the
Liu, who is also the Chinese language Program
coordinator at IU, said she began planning this event
almost six months ago.
"During the festival, we award students (who
participate in the festival) with prizes that our
teachers have brought back from China." Liu said.
"Some of these prizes can be Chinese books, movies,
comic books, paintings or calligraphy sets."
Judges of awards are faculty members, who rank the top
three or four performances in the categories of
performance and video.
The festival is run mostly by students who are learning
Chinese at all levels, first through fourth year, Liu
"I've had a long-time
obsession with Chinese culture
and language," said Dittman, a first-year Chinese
freshman." And now that culture is
being lost through the takeover of communism and now
Although she will spend
most of her time at the
watching her classmates perform
their plays and skits, Dittman
will also play a role in a project. She described her group's presentation as an ancient
hero tale with a
"The Monkey King is one of the most famous heroes in
Chinese culture," Dittman said, referring to the
main character of a famous Chinese epic. "Our skit
is like the Monkey King meets 'Monty Python,' only they
aren't searching for the holy grail."
Following the performances will be a banquet at 3:30
p.m. held at the library, featuring food donated from
Chow Bar, China Buffet and Dragon Express. The
event is free.