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    Viennese traditions waltz to Beijing

    By Liu Hui | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2019-03-16 07:00
    Dancers perform at the news conference at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing, March 14, 2019. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

    Chinese waltz enthusiasts have cause for excitement as the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center has announced its annual waltz gala, the Kempinski Vienna Ball Beijing, set to be held on April 13.

    The hotel has hosted the event annually for the last four years as part of their efforts to bring Austrian culture to China, and this year's ball will again try to bridge the passion for music and art between Beijing and Vienna.

    Friedrich Stift, Austrian ambassador to China, addresses guests and media during a news conference at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing, March 14, 2019. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

    Friedrich Stift, Austrian ambassador to China, said that he hopes the ball will provide "unparalleled Viennese culture and one of the most important insights into the Austrian lifestyle to Beijing, the city of the imperial traditions and the joy of life."

    The ball will attempt to advance local community art, according to organizers, and will feature a performance from one of Europe's leading ensembles, the Strauss Festival Orchestra Vienna, with reality TV star Allan Wu acting as the event's bilingual host.

    Former state opera solo dancer Heinz Heidenreich will lead guests in a quadrille dance during the night, helping them to dance with grace, style and confidence.

    Brice Péan, managing director of the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center, announces the annual waltz gala this April during a news conference at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing, March 14, 2019. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

    "It's in Kempinski's DNA to bring the same appreciation to the fans, connoisseurs and aficionados of great music, art and fashion of Beijing," said Brice Péan, managing director of the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center.

    Austrian snacks and wine served during the news conference at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing, March 14, 2019. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

    The ball will also feature an Austrian gourmet feast, showcasing the country's traditional cuisine, and represents the best way of experiencing European culture, according to Péan.

    "Since we created the tradition, we need to maintain it," he told China Daily's app.

    Friedrich Stift (left) together with Brice Péan (right) join an exclusive interview with China Daily's app after their news conference at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing, March 14, 2019. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

    While the Vienna Ball has a history of more than 80 years, 2019's edition is to be ambassador Stift's second event. He said he hopes the ball can help develop friendships between the people of China and Austria.

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