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Chinese, foreigners celebrate Women's Day in Beijing 2008

On March 7, over 1,000 Chinese and foreign women celebrated the day of their own in Beijing with fashion, dance and singing shows.

On Friday, March 7, over 1,000 Chinese and foreign women filed into the Great Hall of the People in Beijing to commemorate International Women's Day. The women ranged from lively, small girls to stately elderly matrons. Everyone sat freely around round tables filled with sweet and savory snacks. The meeting opened up with a formal welcome by the head of the All China Women's Federation, Gu Xiulian.

She touched upon several significant topics that concern women and the nation. Women have made great progress. The literacy level for Chinese women has significantly increased, with the average length of education now 7.3 years. Urban and health care systems are getting better, rural and farm cooperatives are expanding and improving. The average life expectancy for a Chinese woman is now 75.25 years. Women's rights and interests are in the news. More and more Chinese women are entering political life and vastly impacting the quality of life in a positive manner.

China has changed significantly, not just for women but also for the entire nation. 2008 marks the 30th anniversary of the reform and opening up, and this year the Olympics will be held in Beijing. "We are enjoying the fruits of a relatively well off and harmonious society," Gu told the assembly.

After her short but rousing speech a wonderful show began. The audience watched a team of young girls called "Flying Dragon" play traditional Chinese drums. Next, a series of fashion shows entranced the audience. The first show displayed all the exotic and fabulous costumes worn by China's ethnic minorities. A very sensual and feminine Qipao parade followed, with a Tibetan fashion parade, a Mongolian male dance and a string of top models for the New Silk Road Troupe.

The second half of the fashion show involved the audience. Over 25 Arabic women got up on stage and showed off their lovely costumes. Latin America followed, with flamboyant costumes and a lively dance. Then a group from Iberia-Latin America performed on the catwalk, wowing the audience. But it was the beat and rhythm of the African dancer that made the crowd go wild. They swayed and stretched and others from the audience were so hypnotized that they joined in as well.
To close the meeting a very beautiful young woman named Tan Jing sang the Olympic theme: "One World, One Dream" and invited little children on the stage with her. All the performers walked onto the stage for a group goodbye, with the women complimenting each other on their dances, dress and beauty. This event was truly an international, warm-hearted and enjoyable way to celebrate both the unity and diversity of women in Beijing.

From: China Network

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