The Chinese language may be hard to learn for some people, but learning it through Chinese songs is easier.
Attaché of the Chinese Embassy in Namibia Lina Wang told Youth Corner that music is a perfect tool for communicating people’s emotions and life experiences, as well as connecting people’s hearts.
She said this following the first Chinese singing competition organised by the embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Namibia held at Unam last Friday.
The competition was part of the International Chinese Language Day, celebrated annually on 20 April since 2010 in order to enjoy multilingualism and cultural diversity as well as to promote the equal use of all six major dialects in use in China: Yue (Cantonese), Xiang (Hunanese), Min dialect, Gan dialect, Wu dialect and the Kejia or Hakka dialect.
The competition’s goal was to provide a platform for Namibians to learn about Chinese culture, and thereby strengthen people-to-people relations.
Wang said they received close to 20 entries from Namibians of different ages and walks of life. 10 of them won the first round of competition, and joined in the final contest on 22 April at Unam.
“The songs they chose are mostly Chinese pop music and folk songs like ‘Jasmine Flower’, ‘The Moon Represents My Heart’, ‘Fairy Tale’, ‘Meow Meow Meow’, ‘The Stars and the Ocean’, and so on,” said Wang.
Learners from the Amitofo Care Centre were crowned champions with their rendition of the song ‘The Arched Moon’. Second prize went to Secilia Shitumbuleni, who sang ‘The Moon Represents My Heart’, while the third prize went to Bertha Nambele with her rendition ‘In My Song’.
Wang noted that the Namibian people’s interest in learning the Chinese language and culture enhances the friendship between China and Namibia.
Meanwhile, a Chinese Mandarin course was established at Unam in 2013. Since then, roughly 80 students have enrolled. This semester, there are 40 students registered for the course.
Unam spokesperson John Haufiku told Youth Corner that students are taught listening, speaking, reading and writing in Chinese over four levels.
“Students who learn Chinese have a chance to go to China to take part in the Summer Camp, and also have a chance to get full scholarships to study in China,” he noted.