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Date [ 2013-01-31, 11:30 ]


Singapore glows for the coming Chinese New Year

(Singapore=Koreanpress) by John Kim = The Christmas lights may have gone out, but Singaporeans need not worry, for rising in a sea of red-lit lights and making everything bright is the Chinese New Year decorations.
 January 19, 2013 had the Deputy Prime Minister, Tharman Shanmugaratnam as the Guest-of-Honour for the Official Light-Up & Opening Ceremony of the Chinatown Chinese New Year Celebrations 2013.

He flipped the switch to bring alive the lanterns hanging all around Chinatown. They will be kept on during the nights until the end of the celebrations on March 11, 2013. The ceremony was held at New Bridge Road.
 After the official opening ,the start of the entertainment on a hi-tech-stage began. It had awe-inspiring staging visual effects. Zhao Bo Jun multi award-winning choreographer,  came on with spectacular live performances. This was the start of a welter of skits, songs, dances, acrobatic performances and martial arts, performed by over 300 performers from 10 Singapore and overseas performing troupes. The latter were from Malaysia and China.

Anticipating the huge crowds, three performing spots have been set up along New Bridge Road and Eu Tong Sen Street. The main stage area stands  between Temple and Pagoda Streets. The maiden performance was an unfurling  of the slithering adventures of two snakes as they journeyed around the world before arriving in Chinatown.

The celebration culminated in the live firing of fire crackers, accentuated by a display of fireworks, that lit the night sky in a blaze of  colours and light. These were set off from a nearby building that resulted in tens of thousands of locals and tourists,  singing and dancing to traditional Chinese music.

Taking responsibility for the decorations as well as the celebrations was the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Citizens’ Consultative Committee (KA-KS CCC). They chose the theme ‘Spring of Happiness.'
The Organizers used square lanterns, informing the designs were inspired by the typical ancient Chinese house in the form of a quadrangle compound where houses were built around a courtyard. There was also 88 red cubed lanterns strung together to form a most innovative snake sculpture. These were conceptualised by 12 undergraduates and four faculty and staff members from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD).

The students came up with the idea of linking cube lanterns together as the symbolic linking of generations. Sky lanterns were also incorporated to represent the ‘igniting of hopes’ of families.

Thus as the lanterns rose, they carried wishes for peace and good luck with worries ‘floating’ away.
The SUTD students were presented with the Singapore Book of Records Certificate for the "Largest Sculpture Made of Sky Lanterns at this opening ceremony. It certainly reflected a good beginning for the Year of the Snake.


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