Cultural awards for 16 well-known Chinese

Sixteen Chinese celebrities were honored yesterday at the Culture China Award ceremony for their outstanding contributions to the Chinese culture in the past 10 years.

The event was hosted by the Oriental Morning Post and all the winners were chosen by a panel of judges, consisting of renowned scholars, critics and artists.

The winners included film director Jia Zhangke, Oscar-winning composer Tan Dun, world-famous pianist Lang Lang, architect Zhang Yonghe, painter Cui Ruzhuo, novelist Bi Feiyu, actor Wu Xiubo, singer Zhu Zheqin, blind singer-songwriter Zhou Yunpeng, Taiwanese composer Yao Chien and architectural historian Ruan Yisan.

The World Expo 2010 Shanghai received a special award from the jury in recognition of its contribution to promoting Chinese culture to the world.

Film director Jia Zhangke, who won the Golden Lion for his film "Still Life" at the Venice Film Festival in 2006, said his next film would be a martial arts film set in the late Qing Dynasty.

"The past 10 years has been a tremendously rewarding experience for me both in film directing and better understanding our country and people," Jia said.

Tan Dun who blends Western and Chinese elements in his compositions said music has the power to change a lot of things in life.