Hong Kong Celebrates the Mid-Autumn Festival with the Dazzling Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance

Blogged by @Lan 
For Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB)

GNDGw6Mw

The Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance will take place on 23 to 25 September 2018

The Mid-Autumn Festival, one of Hong Kong’s most commemorated festivals, is in the midst of celebration since 24 September (the 15th day of the 8th month on the Chinese Lunar Calendar). Said to have evolved from a moon-worshipping ceremony ahead of the autumn harvest, the festival provides a peek inside Hong Kong’s long-held traditions.

During this annual festival, visitors will witness the city coming alive, as the century-old Fire Dragon Dance swirls through Tai Hang, lanterns illuminate the sky, and Australian artist Amanda Parer’s ethereal “Moon Rabbit Lumiere” installation hops through the city for the first time. Here’s a guide to the rituals, events, and art installations across Hong Kong.

Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance (23 – 25 September 2018)

Q7tU65GA

Paying tribute to the Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations of old, Tai Hang residents gather to take part in the three-day Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance. People from across the city head to the dance to enjoy the roaring festivities, which were inscribed on China’s National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2011.

The tradition is thought to have emerged in the 19th century, following a typhoon and a plague that devastated Tai Hang. By parading a fierce dragon through the streets, the villagers believed they could ward off evil spirits and bad luck. Today, the experience promises an explosion of drums, gongs and incense, as nearly 300 trained participants carry a 67-metre dragon covered in glowing joss sticks through the streets. The first thing you’ll notice as the dragon flies by is its 70-kilogramme head, made of sheet metal, straw and rattan, with two electric torches for eyes – that’s a face you’ll never forget!

Mooncakes

9fsIeJog

The Langham, Hong Kong’s white lotus seed with double egg yolk mooncake

Mooncakes are one of the most popular elements of Hong Kong’s Mid-Autumn Festival, and for good reason. Baked in intricate moulds featuring auspicious Chinese blessings, mooncakes are associated with family – the round shape is thought to symbolise completeness – and it’s common to give these dense treats to loved ones during the festival to wish them a long, happy life.

The treat is traditionally filled with lotus seed paste and two egg yolks, but over time, Hong Kong has  welcomed many innovative iterations, such as chocolate, durian, kumquat, matcha, egg custard and red bean, to name just a few.

Mid-Autumn Lantern Carnivals 2018 (22 – 25 September 2018)

During Mid-Autumn Festival, the city comes alive with spectacular lantern displays. Visitors can get in on the action at one of the annual Mid-Autumn Lantern Carnivals, which take place in Tai Po Waterfront Park, Victoria Park, Tuen Mun Park, and the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza.

As the lanterns light up the night sky, tourists and locals alike can bask in the festive atmosphere and learn about the craft of traditional lantern making. Additional family-friendly activities include game booths and folk craft demonstrations.

“Moon Rabbit Lumiere” installation (19 September – 17 October 2018)

gojswEjA

Australian artist Amanda Parer’s “Moon Rabbit Lumiere” installation during the day

For the first time in Hong Kong, Australian artist Amanda Parer’s larger-than-life “Moon Rabbits” will hop through town. The “Moon Rabbit Lumiere” art installation will take place on Lee Tung Avenue in Wan Chai and at the China Hong Kong City in Tsim Sha Tsui. Both venues will showcase 10 illuminated “Moon Rabbits”, as well as a series of celebratory events, workshops, picnics and fairs throughout the month long exhibitions.

tG5bzUGw

The reflection of Australian artist Amanda Parer’s “Moon Rabbit Lumiere” installation during the night

 

For more information about Hong Kong and the upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival festivities, please visit the Hong Kong Tourism Board at http://www.discoverhongkong.com

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply