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A middle-aged farmer in northern China has become an online celebrity for his impressive recitation of a famous Chinese poem.
With a mellow, deep voice and speaking top-level standard Mandarin, Yu Xinwei’s recitation of Second Farewell to Cambridge, a famous poem in China written by early 20th-century Chinese poet Xu Zhimo, has won him millions of fans on social media.
Known as Uncle Shoushan on Douyin, China’s version of TikTok, 45-year-old Yu has raised many eyebrows for his plain appearance but stunning voice and recitation skills.
Though China has largely eliminated illiteracy, Yu has still broken stereotypes, with people surprised a farmer like him could speak Mandarin like a radio announcer.
Video player from: YouTube (Privacy Policy, Terms)
Having spent most of his life farming and taking odd jobs in his hometown in Longhua county, Hebei province, Yu started streaming live as a singer two years ago. Besides singing, he said he also likes watching documentaries on state television and studying voice dubbing.
He said he never expected his poetry recitation would win so many hearts.
“All I did was singing before. It was a surprise to me that I would be famous the first time I recited a poem,” he told the Qianjiang Evening News earlier this month.
His account on Douyin has 1.56 million followers and over 7 million likes.
This article originally appeared on the South China Morning Post (www.scmp.com), the leading news media reporting on China and Asia.
Copyright (c) 2020. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.
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