Beating drums and clashing cymbals could be heard coming from Festival Hall Saturday night.
A celebration featuring lion dancers from Calgary kicked off Chinese New Year in Red Deer, which is on Feb. 5th.
In Chinese culture, the lion symbolizes power, wisdom and superiority, explained Lawrence Lee, a board member with the Red Deer and District Chinese Community Society.
Lion dancers, who are martial arts dancers, are said to chase away evil spirits, he said. They are often mistakenly thought to be dragons.
“The Lion Dance is one of the most important traditions in Chinese New Year,” Lawrence said. “It is thought to bring prosperity and good luck for the upcoming year. The Lion Dance also creates a festive atmosphere and brings happiness.”
Amazing Chinese Lion dance taking place in Red Deer for Chinese New Year. @RedDeerExpress pic.twitter.com/ZJ7A87uEF1
— Robin Grant -Red Deer Express (@robingreporter) February 3, 2019
The celebration and banquet at Festival Hall feature 12 performances. These include a fashion show, Mongolian dancing, singing groups, Chinese instrumentals and Qigong and Tai Chi martial arts.
According to Chinese astrology, it is the Year of the Brown Earth Pig.
The Chinese New Year Banquet is organized by the Red Deer and District Chinese Community Society.