The accepted party however — as well as the action most closely linked to the lunar new year across the world — stays that of the lion dance that is iconic. In Chinese communities from New York
to Shanghai, colorful lion dances are performed to ensure an auspicious year ahead.
For members of Kwok’s Kung Fu and Dragon Lion dance team
in Hong Kong, Chinese New Year is their
most active season, with dancers training more
than 8 hours at a time and performing at 40 occasions on the two-week vacation.
“You have to work
hard and practice hard,” says Master Andy Kwok, that has spent the last two decades instructing the dance team’s 500 members past and current. Beyond Chinese New Year, the team performs at special events including weddings and new business openings, and competes in a variety of contests in Asia
and Hong Kong
Based on kung fu techniques, the skill of the lion dance is rooted in type and subject. But bringing the lion that is lively to life, demands a level of playacting and artistry.
“When you go inside the lion head, you have to think like
the lion, not like a human,” Kwok describes. “You have to know the character of the lion, blink like the lion, be hungry like the lion.”
In the video above, see the primary two characters of the Southern-design of the Chinese lion dance demo movements. Tony Yuen plaies the monk, Reeve Chan plaies the lion’s head as well as Steven Cheng plaies the lion’s tail.