Feature: Pakistani students feel charm of Spring Festival, Village Super League

Updated: February 5, 2024 Source: Xinhua News Agency
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An aerial drone photo taken on Feb. 3, 2024 shows fireworks illuminate the night sky at a village gala in Rongjiang County, southwest China's Guizhou Province. (Xinhua/Liu Xu)

Pakistani students immersed in the festive atmosphere of the Chinese New Year at a village gala in southwest China's Rongjiang County, the birthplace of the Village Super League.

GUIYANG, China, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Football and music are like a lingua franca that links people together, said Pakistani student Rafia Saif after attending a village gala in Rongjiang County, southwest China's Guizhou Province.

Rongjiang County on Saturday held a village gala, which featured an invitational football match and ethnic cultural performances to celebrate China's upcoming Spring Festival.

In 2023, the Village Super League, dubbed "Cun Chao" held in Rongjiang County, went viral in China for its popularity, colorful ethnic performances and down-to-earth nature.

The county is inhabited by 28 ethnic groups and the local minority population accounts for more than 80 percent of the county's total.

Local ethnic minorities wear their traditional costumes and silver ornaments at important occasions. They also play a musical instrument called Lusheng, sing folk songs and perform dances to welcome the Spring Festival.

Saif hails from the northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, and has studied at Guizhou Medical University for nearly five years.

"The performances of the gala were astonishing, and the locals were very enthusiastic," said Saif, adding that her hometown shares similar cultural activities with Guizhou, and people also gather together to dance and set off fireworks during important holidays.

Saif's friend, Hassan Syeda Farwah, who also comes from Pakistan, and has stayed in China for four years, also took part in the village gala.

"It's not my first time to celebrate the Chinese New Year in China, but I think it's the first time to see that the celebration has been so beautiful, moving and exciting," she said.

Last year, Farwah and Saif were invited by Chinese friends to spend the Chinese new year at their homes and treated as members of their family.

"This year, many Chinese friends have invited us to their hometown to welcome the upcoming Spring Festival together, which warms us a lot," Farwah said.

Editor: Tian Shenyoujia