Poetry performance highlights city's history, culture

Artists, including NPC delegates, showcased Shanghai's revolutionary culture and history through poetry and song.

Shanghai's poetry reading performance, titled "From Shikumen to Tiananmen", was brought to Beijing during the national Two Sessions to promote the city's revolutionary culture.

Held at the National Center for the Performing Arts, it consisted of nine sections with 19 poems and two songs performed by 39 artists.

The performance reviewed the Communist Party of China's history from the First National Congress of the CPC in a shikumen house in Shanghai in 1921 to now.

The artworks of a related exhibition of the same name in Shanghai last year were used as the background on screens during the reading. The poems were all from communists or about communism by famous poets.

The performers came from various fields, including drama, film and television actors or actresses, recitation artists, Beijing Opera actors and singers.

They included two NPC deputies from Shanghai — Cao Kefan, a TV host with the Shanghai Media Group and renowned baritone Liao Changyong. 

Cao said it was very meaningful to hold such a performance during the Two Sessions.

"It's important for Shanghai, the birthplace of the CPC, to have such a performance to show its revolutionary history and the spirit that remains present," Cao said.

"Shanghai has rich revolutionary culture. It has many historic sites related to the growth of the Party. It's also a confluence of various cultures like its regional culture and the culture of Jiangnan — the southern areas of the Yangtze River."

Liao said: "Through this performance, people can learn that Shanghai is not only a place where East meets West but also the origin of China's communism. And we Shanghai artists have the responsibility to create good pieces related to the city's revolutionary culture for the public."

Zu Zhongren

Famous baritone Liao Changyong, also an NPC deputy, sings on stage.

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