2022-02-25 21:01:40

The Magnolia Awards are Receiving Submissions and the Traditional Themes are all the Rage


In the past year, shows with traditional elements have gradually become the TV viewers’ new favorites. In the CCTV Year of the Tiger Spring Festival Gala Evening, the dance drama The Journey of a Legendary Landscape Painting, took the audiences into a Chinese painting masterpiece and back in history to the Song Dynasty. Before that, CCTV's Mid-Autumn Festival Gala and Henan TV's Mid-Autumn Festival Carnival, also set off a traditional Chinese culture craze. At the recently concluded Winter Olympic Games, traditional Chinese elements were also ubiquitous: Dragon-patterned snowboard, koi-patterned helmet, and uniforms inspired by the painting A Thousand Li of Rivers and Mountains...... the Chinese elegance graced the snow and ice-covered Olympic arenas.


As the wind vane of the Chinese television industry, this year's Shanghai TV Festival Magnolia Award has received numerous outstanding submissions that depict ancient beauty, promote traditional culture and showcase cultural confidence. The gallantry and patriotism of Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils, the reinterpretation of Chinese culture of Chinese Archaeology Assembly and Dragon Boat Festival Carnival, the modern philosophical reading of Wang Yangming, the Japanese classical aesthetics of The Tale of the Heike...... With their own characteristics, bringing audiovisual enjoyment to the audiences through innovative technology, these works organically integrate the traditional and the modern, the new and the old, promote traditional culture among the new generation of viewers.


TV Series Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils


Adapted from Louis Cha's novel of the same title, set under the reign of Emperor Zhe Zong of Northern Song Dynasty, the TV series revolves around three protagonists, Qiao Feng, leader of the beggar clan, Duan Yu, a prince of Dali and Xu Zhu, a Shaolin monk, who defend the enemies and shoulder the responsibilities while experiencing strifes and the pain of futility. The new version of Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils explores gallantry and love in depth, delving deeper into the emotional motives of the characters and the summoning of their gallantry and patriotism. It creates a more realistic and solemn historical context and closely combines the fate of the main characters with the history, which adds to the authenticity and solidity of the drama.


Variety Show Chinese Archaeology Assembly


Chinese Archaeology Assembly aims to "unlock the archaeological code and explore the Chinese civilization”. First of its kind as a variety show, it presents the achievements of Chinese archaeology in a century, leads viewers to travel through history and space and feel the pulse of Chinese civilization. It is the first to adopt a "space exploration" model, using XR technology to create a mystery space and a variety of artistic forms to reproduce historical scenes. “Revitalizing" archaeological achievements, it presents the archaeological work and archaeological culture on stage, which is thought to be only confined to scholarly study. It not only shows the historical lineage of the origin and development of Chinese civilization, its splendid achievements and significant contributions to civilizations around the world, but also inspires the passion for archaeological culture among the audiences.


Variety Show Dragon Boat Festival Carnival


Telling four parallel and intertwined stories of the ladies, it is the prequel to The Night Banquet at the Tang Palace. Through a new form of artistic expression, the show examines traditional culture and conveys to the audiences the festival’s cultural message, "to ward off the evil, to memorialize the deceased sages, and to love the country and the people”. It also makes breakthroughs in the form of innovation and uses modern technology to reproduce the stunning beauty of ancient times. The graceful Ode to the Goddess of Luo River, the stunning Fair Ladies, the soul-stirring Dragon Boat Festival, the enchanting Tang Seal, the time-transcending Heir of Medical Sage and the Song of Zongzi ...... The audiences followed the footsteps of a Tang beauty to relive the customs and allure of the thousands-year-old Dragon Boat Festival.


Documentary Wang Yangming


Based on the five themes of "indulgence", "distress", "enlightenment", “achievement", and “reason”, it consists of five episodes, each of 40 minutes. It creatively reenacts the scenes, reorganizes Wang Yangming's life history from a modern perspective, explains the evolution and the core of his thought, and examines the essence of "unity of knowledge and action", “intuitive knowledge", and “good virtue" through his life stories. To be true to the history, academic advisors, including Chen Lai, President of the Institute of Chinese Studies of Tsinghua University and President of Chinese Philosophy History, Wu Guang and Qian Ming, researchers of Zhejiang Academy of Social Sciences, Dong Ping, Professor of Zhejiang University, Zhang Xinmin, Professor of Guizhou University, and Fang Zhiyuan, Professor of Jiangxi Normal University, are consulted. The creation process is academically rigorous and meticulous, which greatly enhances the historical and ideological value.


Animation The Tale of the Heike


It is inspired by Hideo Furukawa’s modern translation of The Tale of Heike, a medieval Japanese epic, and directed by the famous director Naoko Yamada. The story tells the gradual decline of the Heike family, headed by Taira Kiyomori, during the period of the Tokugawa Shogunate. It provides a panoramic view of Japan's dramatic transformation from an aristocratic society to a samurai society in 15 years. Simple, unsophisticated and full of old charm, it reveals strong traditional Japanese aesthetics.


The above submissions send a signal that the ancient style is becoming the new trend on television nowadays. Professional and ingenious TV producers at home and abroad are finding inspirations from history and culture to creatively transform the traditional culture into new sensations. Tradition-themed works are frequently causing a sensation and are highly sought after, which proves that quality trumps all and garner admiration. It has also shown that the traditional cultural genes can cross the boundaries of time and space to amaze the young generation, inspire their love for traditional culture, and boost their confidence in traditional culture.


Which works will stand out to be nominated for this year's Magnolia Awards? See you when Magnolias are in bloom!

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