The ceremony of the inaugural Orchid Awards took place in Beijing on September 8, during which one laureate for the Lifetime Honorary Award, three for the Outstanding Achievement Award, and six for the Friendship Envoy Award were announced.
Joseph William Polisi, the music educator who won the Lifetime Honorary Award, is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and President Emeritus and Chief China Officer of The Juilliard School, a leading school of performing arts in New York. He had led the school for 34 years (1984–2018), the longest presidential term in its history. After stepping down from his distinguished tenure in June 2018, he now supervises the overall development of The Tianjin Juilliard School in Tianjin Municipality, close to Beijing. According to the award statement, Polisi uses music to make the people-to-people exchanges between China and the United States an affectionate symphony.
Joseph William Polisi gives a speech at the Orchid Award International Cultural Forum in Beijing on September 8 (YIN KANG)
While receiving the award, Polisi expressed his gratitude for his colleagues at The Juilliard School in the U.S., as well as his friends and partners who made a dream come true with the creation of The Tianjin Juilliard School.
Initiated by China International Communications Group (CICG) in 2022, the Orchid Awards aim to facilitate cultural exchange and mutual learning between China and other nations.
The award ceremony was followed by the Orchid Award International Cultural Forum, at which guests from China and abroad discussed promoting the diversity of civilizations.
Polisi congratulated CICG and the Secretariat of the Orchid Awards for having the vision to create the awards. He said the awards will “make sure that cultural communication and people-to-people exchange comes back in a much stronger fashion, so that we can all begin to understand each other better.”
Copyedited by G.P. Wilson
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