I have always like watching Lion Dance performances since I was a little girl. I love the sounds of the clangs and the beats of the Chinese drum to drive up the atmosphere for joyous occasions.
Traditionally, Lion Dances have been used by Chinese to bring in good luck and fortune and to ward of any evil spirits.
There are generally two types of Lion Dance, categorised as the Northern (shaggy, orange and yellow ones, looks like Barkley from Sesame Street in my opinion. ;p ) and Southern Styles (furry trimmed ones). The ones we see more commonly in Singapore are the Southern Styles.
photo credit: chinwoo.com
Personally I like the Southern Style Lion Dance better as they look more adorable.
During this Chinese New Year, my parents requested for a Lion Dance to be performed in our home.
There is a set of items that should be prepared for the Lion Dance to perform the “Cai Qing” 采青 to hang the lettuce “生菜” from the ceiling to allow the Lion to grab the lettuce and the Ang Bao dangling from a string. However due to space constraints and the potential of knocking things of their positions, the lion dance troupe just requested us to place everything onto a tray. The Ang Bao contains the fees for the Lion Dance.
The Lion Dance started with the Lion peering animatedly into our home and then entering through the doors with lots of zest.
The lion approached the plate of lettuce & orange in a cautious yet curious manner, sniffing the plate a bit and then backing off before moving towards the plate again. And finally it settles over the plate as though claiming property of the plate.
What they did to the plate of mandarin oranges and fa cai! The word “Fa”, is so nicely arranged! And beneath the lettuce, we secret numbers! And they explained us to that it is up to us how we want to lift up the lettuce to unveil the numbers below it but we had to remember the sequence of the numbers if we wanted to buy 4D!
There was a Lion Dance at our office too! This time it was Red!
With these Lion Dances, hope that my year will be filled with good luck and fortune!!