"As a grassroots cultural artist, what can I do for the people?" Du Meishuang, a deputy to the National People's Congress (NPC) and deputy director of the Huagu Opera Protection Center of Dingcheng District, Changde City, Hunan Province, always asks herself this question to motivate herself.
Du was named the national intangible inheritor of Huagu Opera in 2018. She has won a number of state-level cultural awards along her 40 years of work.
In recent years, Du has been devoted herself to popularizing Huagu Opera in the countryside and the campuses. She has participated in more than a hundred relevant events each year, aiming to expedite rural revitalization by means of promoting art among the folks.
Her field study revealed that the people's material well-being has been markedly improved in many places, but their life on the cultural and spiritual level is relatively far from satisfactory, with insufficient cultural facilities, which hinders the inheriting and imparting of the traditional culture and art. Meanwhile, outflow of opera talents is another challenge she has discovered from her study.
Such situations have driven Du to focus her efforts on such issues as constructing public cultural infrastructure in the rural areas, restoring municipal opera schools, and developing grassroots folk opera troupes.
"I will stay dedicated to the improvement of people's livelihood at the grassroots level and work on the inheritance and development of opera culture, " said Du. "I will also spare no effort to speak out for the people, to serve the people and to fulfill my duties as an NPC deputy."
(Source: Xinhua)March 2, 2022