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People Crowd Int'l Pop Music Rally in Beijing

Despite of the dusty weather, thousands of zealous grass-roots Chinese with cameras, sun-glasses, Cokes and beers flowed into an international pop music rally in Beijing to enjoy the week-long May Day holiday.

"It sounds very good and I even cannot help dancing," a college student who only gave his surname as Wu said, rocking his body when a band from Belgium is performing on the stage in the Chaoyang Park in northeast Beijing.

Some other audiences around Wu look relaxed but the traditional Chinese culture highlighting self-restraint prevented them from further actions beyond applause.

"In fact, there are the same impulse in the hearts of many people around me to sing and dance. We are shy to some extent but we will follow up if someone moves the first step," said the young guy from the Southwest University of Science and Technology in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

Some 52,000 Beijingers and tourists from across the country came to the pop music festival in May 1, the beginning of the holidays. More than 57,000 people crowded the park the next day for the gathering from 9 AM to 9 PM.

Wu's prediction came true when a choric group from South Africa made an exaggerated show, which sparked applause and whistle. A vanguard dance group from Cape Verde Islands also won high remarks.

"It's amazing that so many artists from around the world came here and performed on the same stage. Though I cannot understand all of the words, it really looks like a global village," said retired worker Zhang Xinghua.

(Xinhua News Agency May 4, 2006)

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