Zhangjiagang :
Yangtze River Culture and Art Festival opens in Zhangjiagang

Wang Yafang, deputy Party secretary of Zhangjiagang, delivers a speech at the opening ceremony of the 2017 Yangtze River Art and Culture Festival on Oct 31. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn ]

The 2017 Yangtze River  Culture and Art Festival began in Zhangjiagang, Jiangsu province on Oct 31. Zhangjiagang has hosted the annual art festival since 2004. The event aims to celebrate and bring together the cultures and art of the 12 Chinese provinces along the Yangtze River.

Zhangjiagang has made great effort to position itself as the home of Yangtze River culture, building a Yangtze River Culture Museum, setting up culture funds and building a cultural platform.

The Yangtze River Art and Culture Festival was recently awarded the title of "festival with the most international influence".

The 2017 Yangtze River Art and Culture Festival will run through Nov 10 and will feature a variety of cultural events, including the seventh Yangtze River Folk and Art Festival, the Seventh Xiaoxi and Xiaopin Festival, a series of symposiums on the protection of Yangtze River culture, and poetry readings.

A series of activities will also be organized to mark the 110th anniversary of the birth of Wu Jinglue (1907-1987), a famous guqin player from Changshu, Jiangsu province.

This year's festival will also be more inclusive than ever before, with discounted tickets and free public performances to encourage more people to get involved with the events.

The 2017 Yangtze River Art and Culture Festival opens at the Zhangjiagang Poly Grand Theatre on Oct 31. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn ]

Folk performers put on a show at the opening ceremony of the 2017 Yangtze River Art and Culture Festival. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn ]