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7000-year civilization marks Lebanon Pavilion Day

By : Xinhua|Updated: 2010-06-23

BEIJING, June 23 (Xinhuanet) -- It's time for Lebanon to boast about their 7,000-year-old civilization, as well as their cultural identity of religious and ethnic diversity at the Shanghai World Expo. It's Lebanon Pavilion Day on Tuesday.

Traditional Baalbek dances opened the pavilion day ceremony. Tracing back to 1,000 years ago, the dance was performed during the harvest season in ancient times. Now, it can be seen at festive occasions like weddings.

Adopting the theme of "Tell-Tale Cities," the Lebanon Pavilion involves exhibitions of culture-enriched customs, natural landscapes, and historical monuments of the country.

Six touchable screens display the past and present conditions of the capital Beirut, as well as other important cities including Baalbek, Tripoli, and Sidon.

The exhibitions are exact and unique reproductions of the beautiful scenes and developing process of Lebanon.

The ceiling of the pavilion features letters from the Phoenician Alphabet, which is regarded as the earliest ancestors of Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.

Visitors are able to sample Lebanese food and purchase some handicrafts.

While the most exciting thing of the day should be the song and dance extravaganza titled "Two Thousand and One Nights," presented by the prestigious Caracalla Dance Theatre. Adapted from the so well-known collection of Arab folk tales "One Thousand and One Nights," the show features 70 performers. The stage setting is hi-tech and presents a grand visual effect, not to mention the vibrant choreography and fancy costumes.

According to the Director, Ivan Caravalla, the troupe started to prepare for the Expo performance last year and even adopted some Chinese elements.

Evidence shows that the contact between China and Lebanon started from the era of the Silk Road some 2,000 years ago. Hopefully, the Expo will set up a modern bridge connecting the two nations and create more opportunities for bilateral exchanges.