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Xinyang excursion of Shanghai Theatre Academy’s 2018 "Walking Classroom" summer vacation social practice group

5 August 2018

Organized by the faculty affairs office, student affairs office and youth league committee of the Shanghai Theatre Academy, the summer vacation social practice group comprising 19 teacher and student representatives traveled to Xinyang of Henan Province for a six-day summer vacation social practice activities on the theme of “Walking Classroom” from 20 to 25 July 2018.

This initiative received the strong support of the CPC Xinyang Municipal Committee and the Xinyang Municipal People’s Government. The Xinyang Municipal Administration of Cultural, Radio, Film, Television, Press and Publishing provided itinerary planning and logistic assurance for the entire program of the visit. During the six days, the “Walking Classroom” summer vacation social practice group visited a number of places including Xinxian, Shangcheng, and Huangchuan etc. Through various forms of activities such as site visits, training and tutorials, interaction and exchange, workshops and seminars etc, the teachers and students of the social practice group carried out productive interaction and exchange with the key players of community cultural and artistic activities, young students, tertiary institutions and art organizations in the Xinyang Municipality.

As part of the social practice on this occasion, the teachers and students of the Shanghai Theatre Academy delivered a unique art enlightenment class for local primary and secondary students. The class covered the four major subjects of acting, dance, vocal music and professional hosting. In the heat, the teachers and students also visited a cultural site of special significance, i.e. Huang’s Old City located in the Huangchuan County of the Xinyang Municipality. This place is special because it is the origin of the Chinese surname “Huang” and also the hometown of Huang Xie, Lord of Chunshen, in the Spring and Autumn period of ancient Chinese history, who is considered the father of the City of Shanghai. For the teachers and students coming from Shanghai, visiting this place was also a “journey in search for the root”. Many of them could not help sighing that the root of Shanghai, an international metropolis today, is actually here. During the social practice activities, the teachers and students also got to understand and experience the “Red Culture” (revolutionary tradition) and “Green Culture” (Chinese tea culture) of Xinyang, as well as personally appreciate the artistic charm of the local folk dance.

After the site visits, the “Walking Classroom” summer vacation social practice group of the Shanghai Theatre Academy got together with the experts and scholars from the culture and education systems of Xinyang for a seminar on art learning, research and practice. Mr Li Zhengjun, Vice Mayor of Xinyang, Ms Zhang Dongmei, Director of Xinyang Municipal Administration of Culture, Radio, Film, Television, Press and Publishing, and Mr Huang Changyong, President of Shanghai Theatre Academy, attended the event. The event had four agenda items and was presided over by Director Zhang Dongmei.

First, Vice Mayor Li Zhengjun gave a speech in which he introduced the basic situation of Xinyang from the perspectives of culture, geographical position and economy and expressed the hope that this event would be able to bring about the cooperation between Xinyang and Shanghai Theatre Academy in multiple areas, particularly, the keen desire to develop Xinyang’s film and television resources capitalizing on the strength of the renowned alumni of the Shanghai Theatre Academy. In his speech, President Huang Changyong first thanked the Xinyang Municipality. He said that there is this historical connection between Shanghai and Xinyang and that the Dabie Mountain has rich cultural resources and both sides may cooperate in many areas such as art education, cultural industry, construction of beautiful countryside and so on. He said that the “Walking Classroom” had made the first step and there would be the second and third steps. Witnessed by Vice Mayor Li Zhengjun, President Huang Changyong presented the plaque with the imprinted wording “University Student Summer Vacation Social Practice Base” to Director Zhang Dongmei. This made Xinyang a "base area" for students of the Shanghai Theatre Academy.

Then, six teacher and student representatives from the Shanghai Theatre Academy and seven representatives from the culture and education systems of the Xinyang Municipality exchanged information and thoughts. The representatives of the Shanghai Theatre Academy introduced the basic information about the relevant colleges and departments as well as the art education of the Shanghai Theatre Academy. The representatives of the Xinyang culture and education systems introduced the development of local culture and, especially, expressed the hope to cooperate with the Shanghai Theatre Academy in the areas of art talent training, artistic creation, construction of practice base etc.

Finally, in his concluding speech, President Huang Changyong emphasized the importance of implementation in the university-local government partnership. He said that the to-do list does not need to be too long, but the implementation must be ensured. He said that the summer vacation social practice group of the Shanghai Theatre Academy would go back to do a good review of the visit and optimize the matching mechanism accordingly so as to lay a solid foundation for further and deeper exchange and cooperation.

The Xinyang excursion of the 2018 “Walking Classroom” summer vacation social practice of the Shanghai Theatre Academy was concluded successfully leaving the participating teachers and students with a deep impression.