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NYC

Chinese Bridge Competition

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NYC

The Chinese Bridge (汉语桥) is a competition where foreign students showcase their language proficiency and is sponsored by Hanban (汉办). It consists of answering a random question on Chinese culture, an oral presentation, and a talent presentation. Sinovision (美国中文电视), a Chinese language broadcaster in the US (available in the NY metro area) is sponsoring the local competition which will select a winner to send to Beijing this August. It's being televised on Saturdays at 9PM in my area and I caught it just as I was returning home. The first round had five young competitors and a woman whose Chinese was clearly the best won.

Is anyone here planning on participating this year? I can't go myself because I suffer from stagefright :oops:

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stephanhodges

Do youi know if there's a web link to view the shows? If not, perhaps a link to the station, so I could ask them directly :)

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Kong Junrui

Sounds interesting, and I would might join, as I'm only a second year student, but I'm in Texas and you said it was in the NY area.

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Shadowdh

Kong I think this is a world wide thing... we have just had prelims at our uni here in London... I have a vcd of one a couple of years ago and it is pretty good, inspirational and relieving... (inspirational because you see it is possible to get to a very good level after 3 years or so of study, relieving for the same reason really...)

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geraldc

It's fun watching it with your teachers, they soon spot who did and didn't have a hand in writing their speeches, especially when someone goes into super flowery language and then gets it all wrong. When they get to the bit on answering questions they totally fall apart.

In the finals in Beijing it turns into a bit of talent show, so if you are entering make sure you have a party piece.

I'm always surprised by the fact they let Singaporeans enter, surely they have a totally unfair advantage :mrgreen:

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Sarevok

Or some 华侨, thats also a bit unfair...

Yesterday I took part in our local Czech round held by the Confucius Institute by our uni and got the "strategic" second place :mrgreen: Which means I don't have to go to the finals to make an ass of myself there, but still stand a good chance to get some short-term scholarship... I also got a little stagefright yesterday and there were only 50 people or so in the audience - can't imagine the finals, where there would be 50 thousand or so (since they air it on TV)

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Sarevok

Well, it so happens that I also have to go to the (semi)finals, even though I ended up second in our Czech prelims. Anyone else here participating? I think not, since this topic has been dead for quite while, just wanted to ask...

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roddy

Not participating, but good luck! I assume you'll be wearing a Chinese-forums.com T-shirt?

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Sarevok

I would gladly wear such T-shirt if I had one... but probably not during the contest itself, since Hanban told us to bring some "national costume" with us O.o Don't know where to get one, since had to leave for work again immediately after getting their mesage (and I will stay there for two more weeks, so my departure for China will really be in a hurry this time). Getting one from a theatre would be damn expensive, and I don't know whether there would be anyone willing to lend it to me for such a long time (these things are rare and rather pricey). Well, it's always possible to wear a suit... maybe I won't stand a big chance to get to the finals like that (what you're wearing matters a lot in this contest... according to one of my teachers), but hell, I get a free trip to China anyways (and I can buy all of the books I plan to buy), so no sweat...

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jamaicas1

Hey Sarevok!,

I'm also going to the competition in July. I'm going to be representing Ireland, really looking forward to it. I'm a bit stumped on the national costume as well. Ireland doesn't really have a national costume apart from traditional wooly jumpers and I can't see myself wearing one of those in >30oC weather!

It seems we also have to prepare as video introducing ourselves, I'm not quite sure how to approach it. Anyway, I'm just happy to be going on a free trip hehe I'm also planning to buy a few books that I couldn't manange to buy online. We stay a minimum of 13 days before they start sending people home.

So, might see you there?

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Sarevok

Sure! Looking forward to meeting you there. Glad to know someone here on Chinese Forums is also participating.

I only hope it won't be as "well organized" as one of my teachers had said... he said that when he was participating four years ago, getting out from the hotel in the evening was pretty complicated. It would be good if I didn't have to go for all of those "wenhua tiyan huodong" (sorry, can't type Chinese here), as I think the time would be better spent elsewhere (i.e. in the bookstore). Sure, some of those could be interesting and I would like to see some new places, but I would rather not go to the Gugong for the third time :tong

BTW, whats your Chinese name? Mine is Wen Delie (same Wen as in Wen Jiabao :mrgreen:)

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jamaicas1

Thanks for that. It will 'only' be my second time going to the Gugong hehe.

I was afraid the competition would be 'too organised' , I hope we don't have something to do every minute....I really do hope they give us some free time to do as we please.

My Chinese name is Xiao Hu 小虎 = Little tiger (born in the year of the tiger : )

Have you read that we have to prepare a 'school uniform', I assume we are going to sit a few classes....I wonder what they mean by that. :help

What are you going to do for your party piece? After racking my brains on what to do, I've decided to play Jay chow songs on an irish instrument..I hope it goes down well :D

Did your teacher tell you how they knock people out, is there some kind of exam?

sorry for all the questions hehe When I'm excited I ask questions, can't help it hehe

Anyone else out there going to the Chinese Bridge competition?:roll:

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Sarevok

About the school uniform... if I remember correctly, the letter said "prepare a piece of school uniform if applicable". As we don't use this stuff in our country, I won't be bringing any. I think this whole school uniform thing is mainly targeted on the Japanese participants. And I also think it doesn't have anything to do with classes, its the same as with that national costume - they just want us to wear those like clowns :mrgreen: Apparently, suits are just too plain for the camera... and therefore you might stand a slightly better chance of making it to the finals, if you are dressed like a clown :mrgreen:

I don't know much about the scoring system either, just watched a few videos from previous years. It seems that the contest wasn't split to semifinals and finals before, there were just prelims held in respective countries and after making it through those, you went straight for the finals. But as there are more and more people participating each year (reflecting the increasing number of new Confucius Institutes), they had to split it like this. The contest also didn't last as long as this one (more than one month), it was usually all done after two weeks...

As for the party piece... you mean that "caiyi biaoyan" thing, right? I have this "xiangsheng one man show" (presented by Dashan on TV once... and originally by some renowned Chinese xiangsheng performer a few years ago). It was quite a success in our prelims, but I am not too optimistic it's gonna be the same in the (semi)finals, since the competition will be much tougher... it might just fade among all those flashy wushu dances etc., as I am not that much of an actor.

Any info on the plane ticket? I got a phonecall from Hanban some 10 days ago, they asked me whether the flight Prague-Frankfurt-Beijing on 29th June would suit me, I told them it's perfectly okay with me, but then no phonecall/e-mail/fax whatsoever...

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jamaicas1

Great, no school uniform so!

I think I might dress up as a leprechaun, I wonder how it would go down....it's as close to a clown as I'm willing to go :)

Your caiyi biaoyan sounds interesting. For our prelims here they stressed that it was a speaking contest but I think for the chinese bridge they want us to perform. I really should have learnt a bit of Taichi while I was in China!

Hanban also phoned me. I don't remember much of the phonecall as it woke me up :mrgreen: but they did ask me what route I took to come to China the last time. (Dublin-Frankfurt -Beijing). Have you heard back from them since?

A guy from the Confucius institute here is taking care of things for me here and he says that they'll buy an e-ticket for you and forward on the reference number.

Do you know how we will be travelling around to the various cities? If it's by train can we bring on big suitcases?. I'm just afraid I might pack too much...

I've so much to do before I leave :(:( How are you getting on with your preparations?

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Sarevok

Well, I received a phonecall from Hanban yesterday and another one today. They told me, they had sent the ticket to the Chinese embassy in Czech Republic. Since already planned to go there today to apply for a visa, their timing was just right. But then I discovered, they have messed up my name on the ticket (one letter missing), which might pose a problem, as there is no passport number on the e-ticket. So I called them back today, and that guy promised to contact Air France (my flight is Prague-Paris-Beijing) and straight it out somehow. Maybe I'll be getting another ticket on Friday, while picking up my visa.

As for the biaoyan thing... xiangsheng is mostly about speaking so I'm sticking to it. It was quite a pain for me to choose what to perform, since I don't know any taiji (and I can't just plug something to my head and say "I know kungfu" after a while as Neo did :mrgreen:), I can't dance and my singing skills are downright horrible. So after thinking for a while, this came out as the only option...

I don't know anything about the travelling around either, but I think it won't be by trains. Travelling from Beijing to Changsha by train takes quite a lot of time and we'll be visiting at least one place before getting to Changsha (Hangzhou or Zhangjiajie and some other... we'll choose one and get divided into few groups as I understand it from the materials they sent us... but maybe I'm wrong). Well, we'll see...

Up to this day I didn't do any preparations to speak of and I won't be doing any for a few more days, since I now do some interpreting work in a factory away from home... I am coming back on Friday, so I'll have exactly one day to pack up :mrgreen: Can't be helped, as I need the money - not only for buying those books in China (any materials for Chinese, be it textbooks or dictionaries ar hard, nearly impossible to buy in our country... so I want to use this opportunity mainly for that), but I also want to stay in China for one more month after the contest is over, I want to go for some short-term course in Chinese... since I get this free plane ticket and all, I just want to make the most of it :mrgreen:

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jamaicas1

I hope you got your ticket sorted out in the end..

I'm also going on the Paris-Beijing flight on the 30th!!

I also plan to stay on to do some traveling when the competition is over. Since the ticket is an open one, I'm sure the later the date the cheaper the ticket is, so I hope they let us choose when we'd like to come back (as it might work out cheaper for them)

Has your volunteer got in touch with you? I think everyone/every group is assigned one...mine is super nice :mrgreen:

She told me that I'll be going to Xi'an...I've heard only good things about it. The snacks are also very famous there.

Best be off, got to get up early to pack tomorrow, good luck with yours. :wink:

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Sarevok

Then you are lucky :mrgreen: I have just this ordinary guy... but he got the plane ticket sorted out right, so no no complaints (but he could have chosen better initially, tomorrow I have to get up at around 2:30 AM to make it to the airport on time)

Xi'an wasn't mentioned in the papers sent from Hanban, nor did "my volunteer" mention anything about it. I spent a wonderful year there before and would very much like to go there again... now that I'm thinking of it, maybe visiting old places might be even better than the new ones. I am not talking about that boring terracotta army here, but about visiting some friends, favourite restaurants and so on... but most probably this won't be possible as it would be an organized tour, so it doesn't really matter where I go in the end.

Well, I also have to go to pack some things up, I am not bringing that much with me though, it seems my luggage won't be packed full... well, it will definitely be on the way back :mrgreen:

Good luck to you as well, and see you there...

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paystrong

I watched the show on the Hunan TV,it was interesting !LOL,by the way I am a Chinese,and watching so many foreign friends speaking Chinese on the competition is really a funny thing cuz at the same time I myself was struggling with my English and French too. my suggestion for the contestants is that try to feel relax on your faces,always smile.As for the personal talent show,I think the tongue twister is not very recommanded cuz we couldn't understand at all.for example,an intresting sir performed 四是四,十是十,Originally,this is to help those who can't distinguish the shi4 and si4 very well ,and the man didn't understand it I guess,so keep your drawbacks in the closet,that would be smart

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