The Festival | Education as a Key Part | Media Involvement | Testimonials & Feedback

‘Official’ Feedback

Through this successful festival, five continents participated in the largest scale artistic exchange activity in the history of Yunnan Province.
He Guangshu, Director, Yunnan Department of Culture and Arts

'99 Kunming International Arts Festival was a beautiful flower that blossomed and enriched our cultural life.
Lu Yunwu, Director, Yunnan Radio and Television Department

I would like to express my admiration for this successful gala festival of interna-tional arts, that brought great honor and support to Expo '99 Kunming, China.
Xue Zegao, Director, Publicity and Cultural Affairs, Expo '99, China.

This festival proved that culture and art are bridges to establish friendship and relationship between different peoples and cultures.
Wang Tianxi, Vice General Secretary, Communist Party Committee

This colorful and diverse International Arts Festival introduced new vigor to the education of Yunnan Province.
Huang Yingxu, Vice Director, Yunnan Education Commission

This festival symbolized that cooperation between the cultural and artistic fields of Yunnan Province and the world, has stepped into a new era.
Gu Boping, President, Cultural Exchanges with Foreign Countries
Director, Yunnan Information Office

Testimonials & Feedback

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The Experience of a Lifetime.
What a privilege it was to participate in the 1999 Kunming International Festival of the Arts! Our performance of Messiah with the Kunming Symphony Orchestra and Consort Caritatis was one of the most significant and meaningful events of my musical career. I have conducted more than 60 performances of Messiah. But, when a student at the Yunnan Arts Institute asked me "Mr. Dyck, when you conduct Handel's Messiah, do you have Christmas in your heart?", I knew that this great work would forever have new meaning for me.
Howard Dyck,
Kitchener, Canada

Intrigued by the Artwork
The Chinese were really intrigued by the artwork, the new styles, and what the work meant. It was a real honour to speak with such enthusiastic visitors and to be shown such generosity and interest. There was a ready attraction to pictures showing God's concern for the weak (Old Man and Famine Icon) and Christ's identification with our suffering (the print 'Crucifixion of a Soldier'). They just loved being invited to walk through the sculpture of the (Narrow) Gate. Great to see the language of art go far beyond words.
Paul Hobbs
Bath, England

A Kindred Spirit
Thanks again for inviting us and making room for us on the team! We were all very blessed and honored.
There was an immediate bond between the Chinese people and our First Nations delegation that transcended time, history, distance, culture, and language. Because Yunnan Province has the highest percentage of indigenous tribal groups in China, there were many connections with the people as fellow tribal members.
Richard Twiss
Vancouver, USA

Engaging the Audience
For over a decade, we had hoped to go to China. Finally the date was set, made possible because of years of preplanning and relationship building with International Festival of the Arts.
The opening performance was filled with middle school students. By the finale it was obvious that the lines of communication were open. We had engaged our audience. They truly loved what they were seeing. We performed our second show for a general audience. The response was breathtaking.
It is customary for Chinese audiences to move around during a live performance. This audience, however, was mesmerized. The general manager of the theater told us that he had never seen anything like this before. He could not believe how attracted the people were to the show.
Roger Nix
Tulsa, USA

Thank you!
I just don't have the words to express the deep emotion that participating in the festivals evokes in me. It is like looking back through eternity; the enormity of all that has happened and is happening. Thank you for letting me be a small part of IFA's efforts around the world
Phillip Griffith Snr.
Lancaster, USA

Bountiful Demonstrations of Love
The forum you and your partners created for strategic engagement with different cultures is entirely different from anything previously attempted in cross-cultural communication.
One of our greatest memories will be the evening that 'Messiah' was performed. As the glorious words rang out over the concert hall and the electronic screens at each side of the platform displayed the full text in Chinese, we marveled that we were in China listening to "I know that my redeemer liveth". Stepping out into a brilliant star-lit night, once again loud and clear out across the city, the strains reechoed. We prayed that its eternal truth would touch the hearts of all who heard.
Nigel & Gilly Goodwin
London, England

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© 2007 Colin Harbinson Email Colin: colin4arts@gmail.com