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CCTV Spring Festival gala: bummer again?

2014-01-29 13:44 CRIENGLISH.com Web Editor: Wang Fan

Public disappointment in China Central Television's (CCTV) Spring Festival Gala of 2014 grows stronger as the event's official program line-up has been released.

The gala consists of 42 programs, of which 23 are singing and dancing shows. Sketch comedies and cross-talk shows, however, are only five, which sets a record low in the history. Other programs include magic show, acrobatics, martial arts, and Peking opera.

People are complaining that 23 of the 42 programs planned for the gala are singing and dancing shows. Last year, more than 10 TV stations in China hosted singing competitions. Several popular performers from the competitions will sing in the gala. What's more, Korean actor Lee Min Ho and French actress Sophie Marceau will take the stage.

CCTV's decision to include a record-low number of sketch comedy and cross-talk shows is also fueling the public's rising ire toward the gala; just five sketch comedy and cross-talk shows will be included in this year's gala.

With plenty of criticism to go around, director of this year's gala, Feng Xiaogang, is also getting his share. Considered an adept filmmaker and master of comedy in China, Feng was expected to deliver on a program that has lost its appeal over the years.

However, Feng ignored the calls from the public, stating that he would rather cut down the number of talk shows than let what he considers "less qualified work" be presented under his direction.

CCTV's Spring Festival Gala has accompanied the Chinese New Year for 30 years since its debut in 1983. Family members would gather together to watch the show as they welcomed the coming of a new year.

However, the gala has gradually lost its appeal, particularly among younger viewers, as its contents have become archaic and not in touch with modern China. According to a poll by China Youth Daily on Tuesday, more than half, 55.4 percent, of the 102,791 people polled think the gala's content in the past few years is outdated.

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