“You Bring Charm to the World: Chinese Influencing the World” Ceremony Presents Twelve Awards In Five Categories
On April 2, the annual ceremony for “You Bring Charm to the World: Chinese Influencing the World,” was held at Peking University Hall, awarding those who made outstanding contributions to the world on behalf of China. Launched by Phoenix TV in 2006, this year’s ceremonies were reported live by Phoenix TV and its online platform Ifeng. Awards are given in the categories of science and technology, public affairs, sports, arts and culture, and emerging talent.
This year’s Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Sidney Shapiro (沙博理, Shā Bólǐ), one of the few naturalized Chinese citizens. While Shapiro is not of Chinese descent, this American-born Chinese has done his part to bridge the gap between the two countries through his decades-long translation work. The deciding factor for Shapiro’s award this year was not his eyes, skin color, or ethnicity, but his self-identification with Chinese culture and the Chinese nation. The 95-year-old Shapiro, who has lived in Beijing for 60 years, concluded his acceptance speech by saying, “dear friends, comrades, I assure you, for as long as I live, I will be worthy of this sentence: I am Chinese.”
Stanford University professor Bao Zhenan was awarded the Science and Technology award for her breakthroughs in creating ultra-sensitive artificial skin. Dr. Bao is currently exploring future applications, such as improving the tactile sensibility of the skin to allow robots to complete more accurate operations and enable steering wheels to sense driver awareness and prevent accidents. A leading female scientist, Bao said she hopes the current generation “will choose scientific research as [a] career goal, as we are now faced with a lot of social energy, environmental, and various health issues, and if these issues are to be solved, scientific research will be a very important tool and will require a long-term effort.”
The “Milky Way One” Research and Development team was the second Science and Technology winner for their supercomputer, the “Milky Way One,” recently named the fastest supercomputer in the world. Chief architect, Professor Yang Xuejun represented the 200-person team at the Chinese National University of Defense Technology in receiving the award. Professor Yang said that while the “Milky Way One has become the world’s fastest [computer], the status of United States as the leader in the field of high performance computers has not changed,” commenting that with the speed of change in technology, to maintain the lead as the fastest will require continued hard work.
The Shanghai World Expo Bureau was awarded a Public Affairs award for their organization of last year’s Shanghai World Expo. Accepting the award on behalf of the Bureau was chief organizer Hong Hao, who said that “the Expo enabled us to see the world further, gaining a better understanding of new trends in urban development, new technology, new management approaches, and particularly, new principles.” Regarding the China Pavilion’s extension until May 31, Hong Hao explained that the pavilion has become an important landmark building in Shanghai, and that after May 31 it will close while its exhibits are enriched.
Gao Langxian, the wife of Taipei’s Mayor, received the Public Affairs award for the Taipei International Flora Exposition. It has been estimated that the 2010 Taipei International Flora Exposition will have attracted some eight million visitors between its launch on November 6 to its conclusion on April 26, boosting Taiwan’s tourism industry, foreign affairs and image. Gao described the Flora Expo as a “good platform for exchange between the Chinese people of the world,” and extended an invitation for tourists to visit the exhibition in the future.
Social entrepreneur Wei Ming-Yan (Nat Wei) received a special Public Affairs award for his social reform work in the United Kingdom. While known for his involvement with several social organizations, in 2010 Wei was appointed a government advisor at the launch of the New Coalition Government Policies on Big Society. Soon after, Wei was appointed a life peer, introduced as “Baron Wei,” becoming only the third person of ethnic Chinese descent, and one of the youngest people ever, to be made a life peer.
Tennis player, Li Na was given an award in the Athletics field after becoming China’s first Grand Slam singles finalist at the 2011 Australian Open. Currently ranked #6 in the world in the Women’s Tennis Association singles ranking, Li Na became a point of pride for China, quickly snatching up endorsement deals from Rolex, Haagen-Dazs and SpiderTech.
Twin sisters Jiang Wenwen and Jiang Tingting also received an Athletics award for their achievements in the world of synchronized swimming. The twins won China’s first synchronized swimming title at last year’s World Cup, a testament to the progress China’s synchronized swimming team has made since it was established 83 years ago. Jiang Wenwen said the award “is an honor for the whole team,” while sister, Jiang Ting Ting said she hopes that “more people will participate in synchronized swimming,” awaiting the day when synchronized swimming becomes more well-recognized in China.
Actor Ge You, one of the most well-recognized actors in China, was given an Arts and Culture award for his achievements in acting. Ge won the Best Actor Award at the 1994 Cannes Film Festival for his role in the Zhang Yimou movie “To Live” (活着), but he more well-known for his comedies, which provide thought-provoking humor and the story of the common people. In 2010, he was seen in popular movies such as “Let the Bullets Fly” (让子弹飞), “Sacrifice”（赵氏孤儿), and “If You Are the One 2″（非诚勿扰2).
Director, choreographer and dancer Yang Liping was also given an Arts and Culture award for her work on the show “Dynamic Yunnan.” After the awards ceremony, Yang said she plans to travel to Japan to perform, hoping to use the “language of dance, a particular kind of spiritual inspiration, so that they may gain the courage to face disaster, to recognize the world again, to continue to survive.”
The National Ballet of China was awarded an Arts and Culture award for their globally acclaimed ballet rendition of “Raise the Red Lantern,” also directed by Zhang Yimou. The soon-to-be-former leader of the National Ballet of China (NBC), Zhao Ru-Heng, said that the ballet came from “only one idea, how to perfect China’s opera and ballet together.” Zhao has high hopes that with “Peony Pavilion” set to show at this year’s Edinburgh International Festival, Chinese ballet will continue to gain in international status.
Three Foshan Junior High students, Liying Xin, Yang Zhaonan, and Chen Wanling, won the Emerging Talent award for their environmental initiatives. For their anti-pollution project, which aims to release nitrogen for soil reconstruction, the three students toured Sweden and were awarded the “Stockholm Junior Water Prize.” At the ceremony, Chen Wanling said that “this award represents everyone’s encouragement for our small environmental effort, but environmental protection has a long road ahead.”
The ceremony ended with a tribute to the Chinese lost in 2010-2011 who made a difference in influencing the world, celebrating Zhu Guangya, Wu Jieping, Wu Guanzhong, Qian Weichang, Wang Yue, Lei Jieqiong, and Liang Congjie for their achievements in science and technology, medicine, culture, education, arts, environmental protection and other fields.