Bony: Hi, My name is Bony Doyle. I’m from the U.S. I go to school at the University of Chicago. I’ve been studying Chinese for three years. This is my second time to Beijing. I spent last summer here studying in Bei Shi Da.
Shen Ting: That means when you first study Chinese you were back in America?
Bony: I did tow years before I actually came to China, in Chicago. But my teacher was from China, and he was a kind of legendary teacher in our school. He was very strict and very demanding.
Shen Ting: I am a little bit curious that why you want to study Chinese?
Bony: I’ve always been interested; because when I was in middle school I grew up in California. There are a lot of people who speak Chinese there, and one of my best friends in middle school was a Chinese. So I go to her house and I would hear her parents speaking, speaking Chinese. It was so interesting and so cool. When I go to college, I thought that I might speak linguistics. So I had to choose a new language to study. And I want to choose something totally different. I’ve always been interested in Chinese. And then I just loved it so I kept on going.
Shen Ting: What is the interesting point do you find in Chinese?
Bony: Linguistics is quite different. English, French or Spanish concentrating in characters, tones particularly I find interesting, fascinating. I actually know nothing about the culture when I studied. Our class, we learned a lot. I find it very interesting and I decided to go to China.
Shen Ting: We know it’s very hard and difficult to learn Chinese. Do you think so?
Bony: It was really hard at first. I had really a very hard time with the tones, especially the third tone. That is really rough for me. As a first-year Chinese teacher, I remember the first day of the Chinese class; he said if you want to go to the parties on weekends, this is not the class for you. You should not be studying Chinese. I would not have enough opportunities to go to the parties on weekends.
Shen Ting: Do you agree with him?
Bony: Well, I’ve been to a couple of parties in my time bites. But it was hard so I did spend most of my first year studying Chinese. I spent more time on that class than any of the other classes combined. But once you get the idea of it, I really don’t think it is that bad.
Shen Ting: You must have gained a lot of fun in studying Chinese, right?
Bony: Oh, yeah. The best thing is to get me the videos. Fist year, we have three corders. For the second and third corders are final projects to make a Chinese video. We were running all over Chicago. We had Chinese scripts in hand, video taping. And that was most fun. Another was I came to China. Of course, that made it all.
Shen Ting: So I think the stay in China must have helped you to know better about Chinese and Chinese culture.
Bony: I would imagine yes. It was definitely a change. I’ve been preparing myself for a long time for something totally different than what I was used to in the US, but I really hadn’t been ready for how many people there really are here and how different just the look of the street was going to be. Because you walk in the street, and the feeling is very different from that in the United States. Because I live in Chicago where it’s a very large city but it is very very organized and there aren’t many people walking in the street. It just has a very different feeling. I like how the people here on the street playing chess or just talking. So that was one thing that I found very surprising when I got here.
Shen Ting: I know that you will perform a song in the competition, right? So what is the name of the song?
Bony: The name of the song is Hong Qi Piao Piao. The reason I know the song is the Shu Qi Ban last summer, the summer school. Well, we may call it the summer program. They taught us a couple of songs. That is what we really did.
Shen Ting: Why did you choose this one?
Bony: I always find this great fun. When I go back to the America, I could forget the song. But when I was participating the competition, I realize I should do a talent. I’ve always loved this song, so I picked it up again and found the words on the Internet, and studied from there.
Shen Ting: Can you understand all the lyrics of the song?
Bony: Yeah, sure.
Shen Ting: Could you explain a little bit for our listeners?
Bony: Well, it is a song about the Chinese flag. And the basic concept… it starts off saying that no one who looks at the flag can’t love the color or can’t feel…well, it’s a little bit difficult to translate.
Shen Ting: Maybe you can just give us the general concept?
Bony: The general concept of the song is that the Chinese flag inspires the love in Chinese people and those who live in this country. And when they are about to leave, it can calls them back. And when they see the flag, it will rise their hopes higher. This sort of thing.