Posted by Joel Martinsen on Thursday, April 19, 2007 at 1:04 PM
The Ministry of Culture and other government departments are finishing up a new framework for certifying culture and arts professionals. The Beijing News ran a Xinhua story today under the headline "If you want to be a music or movie star, you'll need certification":
Wang seems to be saying that once producers and agents can recognize talent merely by glancing over a professional certification, there will no longer be any reason to air programs like Super Girls and Happy Boys. Already vulgar and indulgent, according to SARFT earlier this month, it now appears the shows are ultimately irrelevant.
Reactions from observers are translated at China Media Project.
Update: More reactions and information: Talent shows applaud the new professional exams; everyone else scoffs, Ministry of Culture explains the culture certification system
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Big in China: An adapted excerpt from Big In China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising A Family, Playing The Blues and Becoming A Star in China, just published this month. Author Alan Paul tells the story of arriving in Beijing as a trailing spouse, starting a blues band, raising kids and trying to make sense of China.
Pallavi Aiyar's Chinese Whiskers: Pallavi Aiyar's first novel, Chinese Whiskers, a modern fable set in contemporary Beijing, will be published in January 2011. Aiyar currently lives in Brussels where she writes about Europe for the Business Standard. Below she gives permissions for an excerpt.
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+ Korean history doesn't fly on Chinese TV screens (2007.09): SARFT puts the kibbosh on Korean historical dramas.
+ Religion and government in an uneasy mix (2008.03): Phoenix Weekly (凤凰周刊) article from October, 2007, on government influence on religious practice in Tibet.
+ David Moser on Mao impersonators (2004.10): I first became aware of this phenomenon in 1992 when I turned on a Beijing TV variety show and was jolted by the sight of "Mao Zedong" and "Zhou Enlai" playing a game of ping pong. They both gave short, rousing speeches, and then were reverently interviewed by the emcee, who thanked them profusely for taking time off from their governmental duties to appear on the show.