Lion Dance Show in Guilin

Dragon and lion dances have been a favorite Spring Festival Tradition for centuries. Guilin City, in China's Guangxi Province is no exception. Each year people get together to share their happiness and cheer on their favorite lion dancers. It is an extremely anticipated and popular event. The lion dance is a performance art which combines dance and kung-fu.

The lion is usually supported by two or more dancers. One handles the head, made out of strong but light materials like paper-cloth and bamboo, while the others plays the body and the tail under a cloth that is attached to the head. The Lion Dance is accompanied to music made by large drum, cymbals and gong. There are also other masked dancers in the front tease each lion with a fan or a giant ball. To give life to the lion, the lion dancers imitate the lion to make many lion moves and the head dancer can move the lion's eyes, mouth and ears for rich expression.

The lion dance combines art, history and Kungfu moves. Each move has a specific musical rhythm and the lion dancers usually perform to the music. Since lion is the king of animals, lion dance is recognized as a wonderful Chinese New Year celebration to dispel evil and bring good luck.

It is considered very lucky to have a lion dance performed in front of your home or business and many people pay to have the lions come and dance for them. It is believed to have a lion dance in front of your home will scare away evil. At the end of a lion dance in front of a home or business, the lion will open his mouth and a scroll will unfold out of it, like a long red tongue. This scroll has lucky poems or charms written on them. This scroll is then hung inside the building for good luck for the year.

For most lion dances, the end is called the Cai Qing (Picking Vegetables". Vegetables, and red envelopes filled with money are tied to a high place. The lion will then eat the money to the crash of music. The music will stop and the lion will then lie on the ground while chewing the leaves. After a moment, the music starts and the lion explode back into activity and spits out the leaves. It is believed that the lion spitting out the leaves is a blessing and represents having a fruitful harvest and luck in the New Year.

-Or Back to-2014 Chinese New year