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Education ministry to blend poetry and music

Inspired by a hit song, the Ministry of Education will set the poems in school textbooks to music in an effort to make them more popular among students.

The program will begin on August 10 and last five days in the form of a summer camp named "Chant China" in Taizhou City, Jiangsu Province, Oriental Morning Post reported today.

A poem-singing competition will be held. The camp attracts more than 100 students.

"The ancient poems naturally bond to music," said Wang Dengfeng, director of the Language Usage Department in the Ministry of Education. "But the original music to the poems were lost over time."

Once the music to each poem has been set, famous singers will be asked to perform them, the report said. The songs will cover the beliefs, practices, and values of traditional life.

Wang said the program was inspired by Chinese pop star Jay Chou's hit song "Blue and White Porcelain," which enchanted students with its beautiful poem-like lyrics.

"It is surely a good thing, enhancing the acceptance of ancient poems," said Zhang Ripei, a language-works committee official. "Yet we can not go so far as to cover all classics with fashion."

Chou's "Blue and White Porcelain" was the peak of a trend that mixed traditional Chinese elements into pop songs. It included incorporating traditional instruments and phrases common in ancient poems in pop songs.


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