Young actresses and actors of mascot Rongbao gave an excellent performance with passion and pride during the opening ceremony of the Chengdu Universiade.
by sportswriter Yao Youming
CHENGDU, July 29 (Xinhua) -- Although no one can see Kang Xinmeng"s face in the opening ceremony of the FISU World University Games in Chengdu on Friday, the 19-year-old actress of mascot Rongbao is aware that her family clearly knew which girl under the costume is her.
"The cutest Rongbao is me," Kang grinned, revealing the tips to her parents and friends for recognizing her among the 34 Rongbaoes.
Kang didn"t eat her words. When she and her mates arrived at the stage of the opening ceremony on Friday, they dashed, spun with one foot on the ground and danced. Their cute and energetic performances threw the attendees into frenzy.
Mascot for the Chengdu Universiade was unveiled on the last day of 2019. Since then, Rongbao has become an internet celebrity.
In April 2023, directors of the Chengdu Universiade opening ceremony went to Sichuan Art Vocational College where Kang is studying, to select actresses and actors of Rongbao.
"The directors told me to show some freestyle moves when marching. I designed my moves before training and put the moves into my mind. These moves helped me pass the test as they made Rongbao cuter and full of energy."
"Fortunately, I stand alongside team China"s guide and flagbearers in my training session. Our national flag inspires me a lot in these days," Kang recalled.
In order to enhance their physical situations, 30 actresses and four actors ran four kilometers every day. They also visited the Chengdu Research Base for Giant Panda Breeding.
"We tried our best to imitate pandas, not only their moves or gestures, but also their expressions," Kang said.
Despite their faces not being captured by cameras, these girls and boys didn"t lower their standards as they kept adjusting moves to make their shows better and better.
Zhang Dongxin, executive director of the opening ceremony, said the directors decided to put the giant panda elements in the historic ceremony from the very beginning.
"Giant panda is unique in China, especially in Sichuan. When athletes are marching, we ask our Rongbaoes to do some interactive moves with the athletes," Zhang said.
"These tiny interactive moves not only give the athletes all over the world a warm welcome, but also show the coordination between mankind and nature."
After the opening ceremony, Kang released a video clip on her social media account, marking her position clearly to her friends who didn"t find her on live broadcast.
"After reaching a milestone of my life, I will take a short break in the next few days. I may have a short trip," she said.