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Back to the "Croisements" Festival in China

Created on completion of the France-China Cross Years (2003-2005), the Croisements Festival has become the largest French cultural festival abroad as well as the largest foreign cultural festival in China. For its 11th edition, to take place from April 29 to June 29, Croisements has presented 150 events in 30 cities in China.
This year, the spotlight has been given to Franco-Chinese artistic collaboration, with an invitation made to French artists who find their inspiration in Chinese reality. In dance, choreographer Jérôme Bel has called on amateur Chinese dancers to recreate The show must go on in Beijing, an indisputable success of the Festival. In theater, stage director Pascal Rambert has created a Chinese version of his key play, Clôture de l’amour, with a tour in Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin. As for photography, Olivier Roller presented a dialogue between soldiers’ images from the buried army of Qin Shi Huang and statues of Roman emperors in Les larmes de la terre in Xi’an and Beijing, while Grégoire Korganow has extended his project in China, Père et fils, with a residency in Chongqing and Beijing as well as a series of exhibits (Chongqing, Wuhan, Shenyang, Beijing).
At the Festival’s opening ceremony, the Pygmalion ensemble, one of the most promising on France’s scene, was welcomed, on stage for the first time in China after being invited to all major auditoriums and festivals of Europe (Aix, Bremen, Hamburg). The program led by young Raphaël Pichon, sung by coloratura soprano Sabine Devieilhe, presented pieces composed by Mozart for the Weber sisters, recreating the atmosphere in which the musician lived with a true passion for love and music.


A chapter of the Festival was devoted to rediscovering the 20th century French cultural heritage, with:
  • A Wifredo Lam and French poets exhibit (Beijing, Canton, Kunming) 
  • a tribute to Pierre Boulez by the Utopik ensemble and the Central Academy of Music (Beijing) 
  • A remake by the Ballet de Lorraine of a surrealist play from 1923, Relâche, the fruit of a collaboration between Picabia, Satie and René Clair, in Beijing
  • The Shanghai 2002 exhibit – portraits of women by photographer Bettina Rheims and writer Serge Bramly (Beijing, Chongqing).
French contemporary creation was of course honored by way of major events such as parallel exhibits by Tatiana Trouvé (Marcel Duchamp Prize) and Laure Prouvost (Turner Prize) at the Red Brick Museum (Beijing). French Miracle Tour (Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou, Wuhan) and the Fête de la musique in Beijing, Shanghai, Ningbo, Wuhan, Chengdu, Shunde and Shenyang, thus enabling the Chinese public to discover no fewer than ten French pop, rock and electro bands.
As for the silver screen, the French cinema Panorama has presented recent successes by professionals and the public alike (like Mustang) in seven cities in China. The emblematic video art collection by Isabelle and Jean-Conrad Lemaître is effective in giving value to this art form.

French cultural offerings for the youth have shown that they are not only for the young, with a Fête des bulles (Cartoon Festival) in Beijing, Kunming, Changchun, gathering together 8 to 10 French and Chinese authors of comics, and a tour of the play, La jeune fille, le diable et le moulin (Beijing, Canton, Shanghai), a Grimm’s fairy tale directed by Olivier Py, current Director of the Avignon Festival.