Ever since 2009, the Spring Film Festival (SFF) has been an annual event held in Shangri-La Plaza to celebrate the Chinese New Year. This year, however, due to the undesirable circumstances and physical limitations brought about by COVID, the organizers at Ateneo Ricardo Leong Center for Chinese Studies and Ateneo Celadon—the premier Chinese-Filipino organization of Ateneo de Manila University, have decided to take the event online within the week of February 3-7.
In the past years, SFF consisted of an art gallery exhibit on the second floor of Shangri-La’s main wing, and a weeklong screening of selected Chinese movies inside the mall’s cinema. This year, aiming to take the celebration online, the organizers have launched a Digital Poster Contest, calling for submissions of digital Chinese artworks from student artists. The contest will be open until January 30, and cash prizes will be awarded for the top 5 entries. Furthermore, an online Gala Night comprising various performances will be streamed through Spring Film Festival’s Facebook page on February 3, at 7pm.
But that’s not all, as the Gala Night marks only the beginning of the weeklong celebration. From February 4-6, esteemed guest speakers from the Ateneo de Manila University have been invited to talk about different cultural topics such as Male Hairstyles in Chinese Antiquity, The History, Practice and Discourse of the Lotus Feet Tradition, and Chinese Landscape Painting. Lastly, on February 7, the weeklong celebration will be concluded with a Musical Concert featuring Chinese songs, instruments, and even dance performances.
Despite being unable to hold another film festival this year, the organizers still hoped to retain the essence of SFF from the last 14 years. “Continuing the tradition of writing film reviews, we also added drama reviews as our new initiative,” stated Spring Festival 2021 Project Manager Joyce Co, “With these plans turning into action, I hope that the 15th Spring Festival will be an avenue for people to know the Chinese culture more and for Chinese-Filipino like me to love and spread our culture to others.”
For more information and updates on the event, you may follow its Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SpringFilmFestival/ or Ateneo Celadon’s page at https://www.facebook.com/celadonateneo/. Feel free to also contact the Ateneo Ricardo Leong Center for Chinese Studies at 926-5118.