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DocuLens Asia: Screening of “Tian Feng and His Institute,” 9/28/06

September 28, 2007IASEvents0

In November 1993, Tian Feng, a first-class composer in the China Central Philharmonic arrived in Yunnan Province with a donation of 100,000 RMB from a military base in Tibet. With the money Tian established the Yunnan Institute for Preservation of Minority Cultures on the original site of the former Southwestern Forestry Institute in Anning County, thirty kilometers west of the provincial capital city of Kunming. This was to be China’s first private institute to preserve traditional ethnic minority cultures. The teachers and students of the Institute that Tian brought together were from remote villages. The teachers are all local talents. They taught the students their respective ethnic music and dances. Apart from tuition waivers, the students were also provided with free boarding. The opening of the institute attracted much attention; some hailed it as “China’s No. 1 School.” Seven years later, in June 2000, the school had to be disbanded due to financial difficulties. Having taken ten years to finish (1994-2005), this documentary records the lives and struggles of the students and teachers under the leadership of Tian Feng. Director: Liu Xiaojin. 180 min, 2005, Chinese w/English subtitles. Cosponsored by the Consortium for the Study of the Asias. Cosponsored by The Asian American Studies Program, The Department of Asian Languages and Literature, and The Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies.

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