Global Times: Vietnamese singer-actress makes waves across China, hoping to see more collaborative programs

BEIJING, Dec. 14, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Vietnamese singer and actress Chi Pu rose to fame in China through her participation in the 2023 season of Chinese hit reality show Sisters Who Make Waves. Chi Pu’s journey is not just her own but an epitome of the growing cultural exchanges and people-to-people connections between China and Vietnam.

Her performance in the reality show earned significant attention from the Chinese audience. Videos related to the hashtag Chi Pu have exceeded 320 million views on Douyin. She also participated in the Chinese food-and-travel show A Delicious Guess, during which she explored various cultural aspects and local cuisines, gaining more knowledge about local culture and food.

This success has opened doors for Chi Pu in the Chinese entertainment industry, as she subsequently appeared on TV shows and events, notably the 2023 Mango Festival in South China’s Hunan Province. Here, she performed a duet with Amber Liu, a US singer of China’s Taiwan heritage, of the Chinese song “Summer Breeze.” Their beautiful singing and dancing quickly began trending across various social media platforms. 

Through these appearances, Chi Pu has become more than an entertainer, evolving into a cultural ambassador bridging Vietnam and China.

When shooting Sisters Who Make Waves, the participants all brought special dishes from their hometowns and invited each other to enjoy them. Chi Pu prepared Hanoi’s specialty, sticky rice cake. While she always thoughtfully introduced Vietnam’s scenery, food and people to other participants on the show, she was also very eager to learn more about Chinese culture with great curiosity and enthusiasm.

Following Chi Pu’s success in China, Vietnam also released its version of Sisters Who Make Waves on the country’s national television platform VTV3 and websites like YouTube. The highly popular show is crowded with famous Vietnamese celebrities, attracting a wide range of local viewers. 

Chi Pu’s appearance on the show reassured the international market about the “universal acceptance of the subject of women’s power,” said Wanghe Minjun, a TV industry expert. Chi Pu’s Chinese journey was also significant for the Vietnamese adaptation.

“After everything that I have done in China, I feel like it is my responsibility to promote more about Vietnam… and I’d like to create more opportunities for Vietnamese people to interact and communicate with international friends, especially Chinese friends,” Chi Pu said during an interview with Chinese media.

“It makes me happy when I see that people from both countries now have more and more love for each other,” she added.

Chi Pu noted that she hoped there will be more collaborative programs between Vietnam and China to further develop their artistic connection and have more opportunities for the people of the two countries to exchange knowledge, resources and better promote each other’s tourism and culture. 

Sun Jiashan, an associate researcher at the Central Academy of Culture and Tourism Administration, told the Global Times that Chinese dramas, games and video platforms have long been popular in East Asia and Southeast Asia. Nowadays, various reality shows, such as Sisters Who Make Waves, have ventured out onto the international stage, which has shown the international appeal of Chinese pop culture.

Sun added that the popularity of Chinese video platforms and social media platforms in Southeast Asia has propelled the dissemination of Chinese pop culture in the region.

“The success of Chinese pop culture in Vietnam is attributed to its alignment with Asian aesthetics, the ability to convey a sense of pleasure, and shared cultural experiences with Vietnamese youth,” Sun said. 

“This demonstrates China’s cultural appeals are influencing and connecting people globally.”

In Vietnam, some Chinese literature classics are household names, and many contemporary Chinese film and television productions are also loved by Vietnamese audiences. Likewise, some Vietnamese pop songs are huge hits on Chinese social media, and Vietnamese singers who appeared on Chinese TV shows have won many fans in China.

“This kind of cultural exchange is conducive to forming a cultural consensus, promoting friendly interactions between the two countries from the grassroots to the government level, and establishing stronger cultural ties,” Sun said.

Beyond the glitz of showbiz, China and Vietnam have brought the two peoples closer through friendly exchanges, allowing friendship to flourish on several fronts.

Travels between the two countries quickly rebounded this year. From January to October, Chinese tourists made more than 1.3 million visits to Vietnam. The Detian-Ban Gioc Waterfall cross-border tourism cooperation zone also started trial operation. 

The strengthening of bilateral relations is also evident in the people-to-people exchanges. Activities such as border residents galas and educational cooperation have been instrumental in deepening understanding and enhancing cooperation. These initiatives reflect a broader strategy to maintain and develop the comprehensive strategic cooperation partnership between the two neighbors.

The road ahead is paved with opportunities for deeper cultural understanding and cooperation. As more people-to-people exchanges emerge, bilateral ties will only be strengthened, fostering a shared future of prosperity and mutual respect.

The small creeks of ever closer people-to-people interactions are converging into a mighty river of friendly ties between China and Vietnam.

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