University of Bristol Lion Dance Troupe to perform at Bristol Museum

By King Lee, Esme Yoko Morishima and Joulin Ng – Troupe members

 

The University of Bristol Chinese Lion Dance Troupe is a rich source of Chinese culture both for the University and Bristol itself. Established in 1995, the Troupe enjoyed an initial boom in success, attracting a wide audience and a strong membership. These formative years were essential in developing the Troupe as a society, as well as providing a legacy that we are privileged to represent today.

Sadly, by 2010, interest had waned and the Troupe faced the very real threat of dissolving completely due to a lack of new members. It was this that inspired its rebirth, and a small group of dedicated students worked hard to show others how worthwhile and eye-opening this society could be. As a result of their efforts, and the lessons passed down from previous incarnations of the Troupe, lion dancing received a new bout of life within the University, and it wasn’t long before it was built back up to the diverse group of students that we are today.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Troupe is to educate people on the technique and significance of lion dancing, and its place in Chinese culture. New members are introduced to the music with simple cymbal beats, which eventually develop into the intricate music seen at high profile performances such as the Bristol Museum. Members are given the opportunity to learn whichever role they are interested in, with the aim of producing a cast of people capable of coordinating a wide range of complex performances.

These performances are also used as a platform for education, and it is an important part of every event to introduce the concept of lion dance to the audience, and explain the meaning behind the colourful imagery. This is particularly rewarding at school performances, where interaction between the lion and audience plays a key role.

Possibly one of the biggest events of the year for the Troupe, and one that Bristol can expect to see in 2016 on the 7th and 8th of February, is the annual performance at the Bristol Museum. This always draws a large crowd, and is a fantastic opportunity for the public to learn more about Chinese New Year in an immersive and creative way.

The museum performance is a chance for the Lion Dance Troupe to pull out all the stops, and will always involve some of the more exciting aspects of the dance, such as aerial stunts, gifts to the crowd, and plenty of interaction. Chinese New Year is typically a busy time for the Troupe, as there is a high demand for performances amongst the Chinese community in Bristol, including restaurants and supermarkets.

Typically these performances will involve more interaction from the lion, and a strict ritual of important imagery, including blessing the establishment and spreading good fortune via symbolic lettuce leaves and tangerine peel. People interested in seeing live performances should keep an eye out during Chinese New Year, but outside of this period the lions can also be found at weddings and university events such as balls and culture festivals.

 

Lion Dance Troupe

布里斯托大学醒狮团自 1995 年创立至今,已成功的在布里斯托城市里建立了非常好的名声。经过了那么多年,表演的次数多不胜数,而每一次的表演也都坐无虚席。精湛的演出吸引了无数人加入我们的团队。然而,2010 年末,继团员们陆续的毕业、离开,醒狮团因招不到足够的团员而正 面临着解散的危机。

剩余的团员们不忍心看着多年来苦心经营的心血就这么给摧毁了,于是立誓要拯救这个团。他们把醒狮团独特的习俗与表演的乐趣传授给大众,让大家对这个传统习俗有更深一步的了解,进而激发新人们加入醒狮团的欲念。如今,经营并维持着这个醒狮团的团员来自世界各地,大家不分你我的依赖着,怀着一份热忱,只为把醒狮团继续发扬光大,把这独一无二 的华人习俗呈现与分享给更多的人。

醒狮团的初衷除了是把每一次的表演完美的呈现给观众,也想藉由每个表演把舞狮满满祝福传给 大众。因此,团员们都对舞狮的每一个动作与其象征性有一定的认识,以方便协助表演流程和解 答观众的疑惑。新团员们刚入团,他们都会被教会如何演奏舞狮的音乐。就算是没有音乐底子的 人也没关系,因为舞狮的音乐并不难,只要团员们肯学习,他们终究也有机会演奏那些高难度的 表演。 我们醒狮团里主要由几个不同的角色组成:舞狮的两位舞者、大头佛的舞者、鼓手、铙 钹手与锣手。如果团员对哪个角色深感兴趣,我们都会尽全力地教会他们。

每一年, 醒狮团最忙的期间莫属华人农历新年了。 今年,醒狮团最向往的莫过于 2 月 6 号和 2 月 7 号在布里斯托博物馆的常年表演了。这个大型表演每年都吸引了人群积聚在舞台前只为了一 睹舞狮表演的风采。醒狮团也常常为了这个表演创新,上演各种高难度动作并把长久的练习发挥 的淋漓尽致。除此之外,曾经受邀的表演也非常多元化,其中包括了各大卖场,餐饮业,婚礼以 及各种文化表演。

舞狮表演之所以那么受欢迎因为它都能为给单位带来福气,财源和各种好预兆。 有兴趣者可以游览我们的脸书页面以进一步了解我们的最新动态。有意招舞狮的人也可以发送邮件给我们的官方邮箱。希望大家满心期待的欢迎这新的一年的到来,预祝大家猴年行大运,身体 安康,万事顺利。

The University of Bristol Chinese Lion Dance Troupe FB Page, click here 

Email address: [email protected]

——————–Advert——————–

Chinese New Year Party at the Brass Pig, Clifton. 2 top British Chinese DJs 10pm to 4am

Click on image for event details

py

 

About Editorial

The editorial team brings you the freshest news.