Sydney Indochinese Youth Sports Association / Trung Han Qun 2018

I’m on a roll with watching other teams this year. I briefly got to see these guys perform at one of the shops in Cabramatta. Unfortunately for me the lions spent most of its time up in the restaurant so I didn’t get too many snaps. However, I did get to see them do a few shoulder stacks as the firecrackers were being let off.

Here are a few snaps of them.

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Australian Da Hung Kung Fu and Lion Dance 2018

I haven’t seen much of these guys before and unfortunately I didn’t get the greatest glimpse of their skills this year either but they were colourful. They had an unfortunate issue with being stuck in an elevator at the nursing home they were performing and weren’t freed for about an hour. Poor guys! I hope to see more of them in the coming years.

Here’s what I have managed to snap of them.

Sydney Yun Yee Tong 2018

Up next with the Sydney groups is Sydney Yun Yee Tong. I managed to see them on a number of occasions across this new year period.

The first glimpse I had of them and their new uniform was at a local restaurant that my family had our 團圓飯 at.

Then we managed to catch them at one of the local temples- Kwan Yin Temple at Canley Vale for their annual midnight performance to reign in the new year. As usual they provided the entertainment by way of lion dancing and Kung fu sets before the firecrackers and incredible fireworks display were lit. A noticeable absence was the Central Coast Jow Gar school who have been a regular fixture at the New Years Eve celebrations the past few years and who usually belt out a number of Kung fu sets.

Finally, I managed to see more of them across their various performances around Cabramatta. There’s no missing the distinctive ding sound of their gong and their new fluoro green uniforms. I’ve included a picture of a new lion of theirs. A purple Hok San with a wicked paint job. I’m not sure if I’m a fan of the pom-poms though.

Dragon Style Kung Fu 2018

We had a jammed packed week of performances across Sydney over the New Year periods. We performed in shopping centres, on the streets of Cabramatta and Marrickville, at a preschool and primary school and at community centres. I was actually pleased to play for the kids and excited to know that the schools, teachers and principal were enthusiastic with having us on board to share a part of Chinese culture that is a small part of the wider multicultural community found in the schools.

We also got to awaken/ eye dot two brand new lion heads for our performances and to add to the teams collection.

And we had 2 guests from Hong Kong to share some of their lion dancing skills and sweat with us.

Happy New Year of the Dog 2018

Happy New Year to everyone for the year 2018. It is the year of the Earth Dog. It is quite interesting because as much as I love lion dancing, Chinese culture and partake in the celebration of Chinese New Year, I was stumped when a member of the audience approached me after one of our performances this year and asked me what does that mean for her with this year being the year of the dog. I wasn’t sure. The only way I could answer was that it depends on what school of feng shui or divination that you follow. I wasn’t sure if that was a good answer itself so I had to look it up.
So what does it mean for us to celebrate the lunar new year.

For me, it was always a time to usher in the old and bring in the new year with new changes, new hopes, new aspirations, or to reflect on the good things we have done in the previous year and to renew our ambitions to continue the good stuff.
It was also a chance for the whole family to get together on the eve of the new year to have a family meal to round out the old year followed by a family meal on new years to bring in the new. For me, it’s another reason for the family to get together and to enjoy each other’s company.

It’s also a chance to “clean out” the house physically to begin the new year on a good clean front as well as to leave all the bad luck and omens of the previous year behind.

As for the zodiac animals, my brief research suggests that it is a way for feng shui or divination masters to describe the certain characteristics that are associated with being born in the year of the dog. For everyone else, how the year pans out depends on your own zodiac birth animal and the school of thought of divination.

More practically, Chinese New Year is lion dancing time. It’s a chance for me to hit up the temples on New Year’s Eve to check out the other schools performances and to catch up with my group of friends whom gather “religiously” to the temple year in and year out to watch the lion dancers, firecrackers and fireworks go off before our annual late night snack. As for the rest of the New Years period, it’s a time to lion dance and enjoy the various festivals and performances by the various cultures and groups that celebrate the lunar new year.

I’ll put up photos of the various performers I got to see in the upcoming posts.

A pair of twin lions

I’ve made a fair bit of progress with my lion after a long break over the Christmas and new years period. I’ve finally finished papering both lion heads. I do have a third frame to be papered and painted but I think I will leave that as a reference frame for possible future lions I make.

Now starts the fun bit. Studying and admiring the finer detail of other lion heads to see the intricate detail that is involved with the painting process.
I can’t wait to start painting these two.
I’m tossing up between a Lau Bei and a Cheung Fei lion or two Lau Bei lions of different base colours

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