Singapore is never short of interesting events. A random, impromptu trip in August/September proved to be quite exciting. When we found out that the 18th Ngee Ann City Lion Dance Championships 2012 was going to take place during the week of our visit, we made ourselves comfortable outside Takashimaya at 7:30pm on a Thursday and witnessed an intense battle between six different dance troupes. The clash of cymbals and the banging of drums brought about the mischief of the colourful lions right in the heart of Orchard Road, Singapore’s major shopping district. All six performances were noisy and nothing short of spectacular. There was even a dragon dance act thrown into the mix during the intermission! In between watching the adorable, feisty lions fling around furniture and the percussionists rile up the lions (and draw in the crowd!), we managed to document the experience on camera.
“Lion dance (simplified Chinese: 舞狮; traditional Chinese: 舞獅; pinyin: wǔshī) is a form of traditional dance in Chinese culture, in which performers mimic a lion’s movements in a lion costume. The lion dance is often mistakenly referred to as dragon dance. An easy way to tell the difference is that a lion is operated by two people, while a dragon needs many people. Also, in a lion dance, the performers’ faces are covered, since they are inside the lion. In a dragon dance, the performers can be seen since the dragon is held upon poles. Basic lion dance fundamental movements can be found in most Chinese martial arts.” – Wikipedia