Minister calls for lion dance tradition to continue during CNY in spirit of M’sia Madani

A lion dance troupe entertains the crowd.

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KUCHING, Jan 21: Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Dato Sri Tiong King Sing has called for the continuation of the lion dance tradition during the Chinese New Year (CNY) celebration in the spirit of Malaysia Madani.

He said organisers could invite lion dance groups to assert exuberance for any events.

“The Chinese dragon and lion dances have a history of over 100 years in Malaysia. Although it originates from China, Malaysia has been assimilating this artistic performance with the local culture into a more unique one, from doing acrobatic stunts and jumping from pole to pole until it became famous internationally.

“Our dragon and lion dances have become a hot topic of foreign countries, and it has grown so well that it has successfully penetrated the international level.

“In July 2007, the Ministry of Culture, Arts and National Heritage declared the ‘high pole lion dance’ as a national heritage to encourage and promote cultural activities in the states and recognise the cultural status of the lion dance in our country,” he said in a statement today.

He also mentioned the participation of people from different ethnic backgrounds in learning the lion dance and hoped that arts and cultural performances could maintain their traditional elements just like the lion dance that transcends tradition creatively and thrives.

Other traditions during the CNY celebration are family gatherings, red lanterns, buying new clothes, making ‘nian gao’ (rice cake) and ‘kuih kapit’ (love letter biscuit), and playing songs.

For the record, on Jan 19, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim launched the ‘Madani’ agenda. It is the Malay acronym for ‘Script’, which stands for sustainability, care and compassion, respect, innovation, prosperity, and trust. — DayakDaily