The Lion Dance

Lion dancing is an important tradition of the Chinese Culture. Symbolically the Lion is considered to be an auspicious animal. The lion dance is used to bless the occasion. It is believed that when the lion dance is performed well evil spirits will be ‘chased away’, thus opening the door for all good things: health, happiness, wealth and prosperity.

The lion dance combines music, art, history and martial art movements. Normally the performers are Kung Fu practitioners, as lion dancing requires suppleness, flexibility, fitness, strength and good balance. Each move has a specific musical rhythm and the musicians follow the moves of the lion in a specific sequence: the drum follows the lion and the cymbals and gong follow the drummer.

There are two types of Chinese lions and Lion Dancing, namely, the North and the South. The differences lie in the movements of the lions during the dance and the appearance of the lions. The Northern lion has a yellow furry coat and a less movable mouth, whereas, the Southern lion has a multi-coloured body with no long hair, and a more movable mouth.

The Chinese are very traditional people and hang on to traditions such as the Lion Dance created by their forefathers. Over the centuries the Lion Dance has been modified in the way it is performed and what it is used for. Its traditional use for entertainment and to express optimism, unity and bravery has been superseded by its use for spiritual fulfillment.

Exotic Escapes will be pleased to arrange for the performance of a lion dance as one of your group’s activity and open the door for all good things to happen to your organization!