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New Taipei City Taishan Lion Dance Cultural Festival

◆ Origin 

“Lion Dance “ is a Chinese folklore tradition that has been passed down for 1000 years. The lion dance is a must have program for all national celebrations and local temple fairs. Every 18th day of the 9th Lunar Month, the birthday of Xianying Master, is the big occasion for Taishan locals to get together and celebrate. The Lion Dance Cultural Festival has been held annually since 2007 and this year marks its 8th year. It is a festival that comprises the ritual of processions for good luck and fortune and the happy atmosphere of the lion dance has become an important feature for uniting local culture as well as the big event that the locals look forward to every year.

The Taishan Lion Dance Culture Festival, in order to promote local cultural features, has made “the largest traditional Flower Lion in Taiwan” as the special mascot of the festival. The lion dance competition whose theme is “lions” aims to spread the martial art “playing with lions” that has been passed down locally for a long time; in addition, activities such as Lion King Creative Markets, and a fair that sells local delicacies, plus a “photography contest” are held, which displays a creative “Lion Art” cultural festival. 

The festival has combined with local religion to create a lion dance culture unique to the Taishan people; at the same time, the local government aims to elevate the lion dance competition to a more professional and splendid event in order to promote Taishan local culture and the development of its tourism industry. 

◆ Activities
1.The Lion Dance Cultural Festival – The Press Conference

The local government hopes to get as much publicity as it can for the Lion Dance Competition through the press conference. World-class lion dance groups and world-renowned judges are invited to participate in the festival to market it internationally. The venue of the competition is set up according to the standards of international competitions, creating features unique to the Taishan Lion Dance Festival. 

Key Point 1 : Lion dance live show such as “ High-Pole” is demonstrated at the press conference to inform the world of the Taishan Lion Dance Competition and invite lion dance groups everywhere to participate in the 2014 Lion Dance Cultural Festival. 

Key Point 2: To celebrate the 8th birthday of the Lion King. It marks the 8th year of the festival, and the mascot of Taishan – Flower Lion – also turns 8 this year. Everyone is invited to come to Taishan to celebrate its 8th birthday and inform everyone throughout Taiwan how splendid the festival is! Everyone is welcome to join the locals in the celebration!

2.The Lion Dance Competition: 

Top domestic/international Lion Dance Troupes are invited to compete and exchange skills in Taiwan and the attention of the activity will be centered on the “Lion Dance Competition“ , turning a diverse activity into one carefully-planned activity in order to emphasize the characteristics of lion dance and make the activity even more splendid and exciting.
(1) The local government has invited 9 professional judges with international judging credentials.
(2) Every competition will be introduced/explained to the public by the head judge to help the public better understand the craftsmanship, steps, movements and level of difficulties of the lion dance.
(3)The competition schedule and participating teams will be organized by the organizer: there are 10 domestic lion dance troupes and 2 international dance troupes participating in the competition, elevating this event to an international level. Also, the local government plans to invite top lion dance troupe from the hometown of lion dance – Hong Kong or top lion dance troupes from the world competition – Malaysia to raise local cultural craftsmanship to an international level through such international cultural exchange.
(4)During the opening, intermission and lunch break of the competition, local performing groups of various styles will bring the audience great shows. 

3.Lion Fun Carnival: 
(1) Various Fairs for Cultural and Creative products: Sell local delicacies. While enjoying the shows and activities, everyone’s needs for eating, drinking, playing and having fun are satisfied. 
(2)Stands for Selling Products Made by Local Artists and Creative Cultural Products: Exhibitions and sale of artifacts at various local neighborhood offices, communities, schools, and groups.

4.The Lion King’s Night

Majestic lion dance show lifts the curtain of the night for a feast of Taishan Lion Drums and Art. Well-known performing groups are invited to bring dance and music shows with local characteristics to raise people’s recognition of the inheritance of lion king culture. Furthermore, to exhibit the artistry of the theme, the local government has invited well-known performing groups to bring great shows, creating an unforgettable memory of Taishan and the Lion King Cultural Festival.

5.Taishan Photography Contest and Exhibition:

Photography lovers are invited to photograph the people or scenery of Taishan or any great moments of the Lion Dance Competition to tell their own stories, capturing the most beautiful/exciting moments in Taishan. Pictures taken during the period of activity and chosen by professional photographers or academic scholars will be exhibited at the Mingzhi Academy.

6.The Procession for Celebration of Xianying Master: 

The 18th day of the ninth Lunar Month is Xianying Master’s birthday and a procession is held every year, and this year, to continue the theme of “Lion Dance for Celebrating, Praying for Blessings” activity, the top three winning Lion Dance Troupes or teams will also participate in the procession and parade. The procession route for the flower lion will be the same as the flower lion car parades and the processional teams. 

◆ Activity Schedule 
 

Name of the Activity

Time

Contents

Location

The Lion Dance Cultural Festival – The Press Conference October 1 (Wednesday)

14:00-15:00

 

To announce the beginning of Taishan Lion Dance cultural Festival 1st Floor of Taishan Stadium
The Lion Dance Competition October 4 (Saturday)

10:00-16:30

 

Invite top lion dance teams to participate in the exciting “Lion Dance Competition” 3rd floor of Taishan Stadium
The Lion Dance Competition October 4 (Saturday)

10:00-16:30

Various creative fairs  

Stands for selling works by the local artists and cultural & creative artworks

Taishan basketball court

1st floor of Taishan Stadium

The Night of Lion King October 4 (Saturday)

18:30-20:30

Performing shows brought by well-known performing groups 3rd floor of Taishan Stadium
The Photography Contest October 1 – 11 The detailed record of great moments from the Lion Dance Competition In Taishan District
The Procession for Celebration of Shanying Master October 11 (Staurday)

12:00-17:00

The Procession - “Lion Dance for Celebrating, Praying for Blessings” Ding Taishan Temple and the Lower Taishan Temple.
Photography Exhibition October 27 – November 7 Exhibition of all wining photos of the photography contest Minzhi Academy

 

 

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