The Confucius Institute in Sofia Held 2023 Spring Festival Celebration Focusing on Friendship between Bulgaria and China and Aimed at Teachers and Students from Both Countries

On 14 January, as the Chinese New Year was approaching, the Confucius Institute in Sofia held the 2023 Spring Festival celebration focusing on friendship between Bulgaria and China and aimed at teachers and students from the two countries. The event was held at the main hall of the Institute. More than 300 people gathered together to celebrate the festive season, including Mr. Yan Jianqun, Minister Counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Bulgaria, Mr. Yang Tian, Head of the Educational Department at the Embassy, Mrs. Margarita Gencheva, Member of the Bulgarian Parliament, Mr. Angel Apostolov, Senior Expert at the "International Cooperation" Department at the Ministry of Education and Science, Assoc. Prof. Valentin Katrandjiev, expert at the Diplomatic Institute at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Snezhana Todorova, chair of the Union of Bulgarian journalists, Mr. Neyko Genchev, Deputy-mayor of Veliko Tarnovo, Assoc. Prof. Nadia Cherneva, Vice-rector of Plovdiv University, Prof. Madeleine Danova, Dean of the Faculty of Classical and Modern Languages at Sofia University, Assoc. Prof. Polina Tsoncheva, Head of the Department of Classical and Oriental Languages and Cultures at Veliko Tarnovo University, and Assoc. Prof. Iskra Mandova, Director of the Confucius Institute at Veliko Tarnovo University. Representatives from the Chinese-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce, Huawei Bulgaria, Moutai Bulgaria, media companies, Confucius Classrooms, as well as principals and coordinators from Confucius Institute’s teaching sites, other guests from all walks of life, as well as teachers and students also attended the celebration. The theme of the event was “Two cultures hand in hand celebrate the Spring Festival”.

Mr. Yan Jianqun, Prof. Madeleine Danova, Mrs. Aksiniya Koleva and Prof. Liu Xiuming delivered New Year's greetings one after another. Mr. Yan extended New Year’s blessings to everyone and spoke highly of the achievements made by the Confucius Institute in the past year. He concluded: "Confucius Institute in Sofia has made remarkable achievements in the fields of Chinese teaching, cooperation with other companies, and promotion of exchange between China and Bulgaria. This is something to be happy about and something that deserves praise." Mrs. Koleva and Prof. Liu fully affirmed the excellent attitude and qualities of the teaching staff at the Confucius Institute, who "work with one heart and one mind, forge ahead with determination, defy difficulties, and overcome challenges together". The work of the Institute "has obtained remarkable results and won full recognition and high appraisal from the society". The two directors expressed that they would, as always, "lead all the teachers and students, gather the wisdom of all the staff, mobilize the strength of the whole Institute, aspire to excellence in all tasks, and welcome a bright and beautiful 2023."

The celebratory show started with a performance by No.33 Middle School in Sofia. Accompanied by the melodious sounds of the song "A Plum Blossom", the female students danced gracefully while a male student drew an impressive plum blossom ink painting. The mythological short story play "Hou Yi Shooting the Sun", the taichi performance with fans, the instrumental duet "Jasmine Flower" and all the other musical compositions gave everyone the opportunity for a further appreciation of the charm of Eastern culture and won constant applause from the audience. The final musical piece was the song "A Bulgarian Rose". All the performers were full of emotion, and enthusiasm, their voices were powerful and resonating, expressing the beauty of Chinese folk art to the fullest.

At the end of the event, the guests had a group photo, enjoyed Chinese and Bulgarian delicacies and had a friendly chat with each other. The Spring Festival cultural activity has further enhanced the understanding and affection between the people of China and Bulgaria, created a harmonious and beautiful cultural environment for the common development of the two countries, and promoted the partnership between China and Bulgaria to a new and higher level.

Bulgaria has maintained friendly and cooperative relations with China for a long time. Especially in recent years, with the joint efforts of both sides, political mutual trust has been solid, and mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields has yielded fruitful results. Continuing to deepen China-Bulgaria comprehensive friendly cooperative partnership conforms to the common aspirations and interests of the two peoples. This event is even more meaningful, as it is not only a happy moment for the people of China and Bulgaria to celebrate together, but also foretells a better future.

Confucius Institute in Sofia

Text: Chen Jie

Photos: Cai Chun, Petya Shukerska

Editors: Liu Xiuming, Aksinia Koleva, Liu Tianchao

English translation: Dima Pironkova


Photo 1 A group photo of the guests and participants in the event


Photo 2 Mr. Yan Jianqun, Minister Counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Bulgaria, delivered a speech


Photo 3 Confucius Institute directors Mrs. Aksinia Koleva and prof. Liu Xiuming delivered a speech on the occasion of the Chinese New Year


Photo 4 Children from private school “Gianni Rodari” performed the song "You Exist in My Song"


Photo 5 Tommy Vichev's piano performance


Photo 6 A New Year’s Еve dance by Chinese language teacher Li Chenxi


Photo 7 A short theatrical play on the Chinese mythological story "Hou Yi Shoots the Sun" presented by students at No.138 Middle School in Sofia


Photo 8 Alexandra Arbekova sang the song “The moon represents my heart”


Photo 9 A taichi performance with fans by “Tianfeng”


Photo 10 Students from the private school “ESPA” sang the song “An Ordinary Wish”


Photo 11 Chinese and Bulgarian delicacies