COLUMBIA - A Chinese folk music concert at MU Friday morning celebrated the launch of the Confucius Institute.
Five musicians from Shanghai Normal University's folk music group performed for an audience including students from Columbia public schools. A string quartet and steel drum soloist from MU's School of Music also performed.
Between performances, various instruments were presented to the audience. Dr. Wen Ouyang of MU translated as musicians explained the origins and cultural significance of their instruments.
Ouyang said she hoped the performance would expose students to new music and culture that they probably have not seen before and "open their eyes to another world to see another world, how those students, those people, do musical things."
The Confucius Institute will continue to be involved with Columbia public schools. Ouyang says schools will have access to volunteer language teachers who come to MU through the institute. Programs will also be available for those who do not live in the area. Ouyang recently finished a high school Chinese language curriculum that can be accessed anywhere in the United States.