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Date [ 2016-01-13, 06:41 ]
Richer line-up of community outreach programmes to promote appreciation of cultural heritage
2016 年牛车水农历新年庆祝活动 



Singapore, 12 January 2016 – This year’s Chinatown Chinese New Year Celebrations 2016 promises to be an even more rousing affair with a richer line-up of community outreach programmes to enrich the annual celebration of this important traditional festival, promote deeper appreciation of the Chinese heritage and to bring the community closer together. Adding to the series of meaningful community events held each year during the Chinese New Year period is the inaugural Harmony Night (新春和谐之夜), which brings together for the first time various Chinese clan associations, religious groups and Voluntary Welfare Organisations (VWOs) in the Chinatown precinct to put together a memorable Chinese New Year celebration for 500 residents of Jalan Besar GRC and Potong Pasir SMC. Locals and overseas visitors can also look forward to learning about the customs and traditions of the various Chinese dialect groups in Singapore in a special exhibition at the rejuvenated Chinatown Heritage Centre (牛车水原貌馆). Organised by the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Citizens’ Consultative Committee (KA-KS CCC), this year’s celebrations is themed “Year of Prosperity & Success, 桃满花香牛车水, 灵猴迎春贺新岁”. From 16 January to 8 March 2016, the festive mood in Chinatown will come alive, starting with the Official Light-Up and Opening Ceremony (牛车水农历新年庆祝活动开幕典礼与亮灯仪式) on 16 January 2016 which will be graced by His Excellency, Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam as Guest of Honour. The Chinese precinct will be lit up in spectacular fashion as 2,668 handcrafted lanterns – the most number of customised lanterns ever made for the Street Light-Up – in the shape of monkeys, peaches, spring blossoms and gold zodiac coins decorate the streets (Eu Tong Sen Street, New Bridge Road and South Bridge Road).

INAUGURAL HARMONY NIGHT





To promote partnership, community engagement and bonding in the Chinatown community, KA-KSCCC will be organising the first Harmony Night (新春和谐之夜) on 30 January 2016 that brings together for the first time eight Chinese clan associations, religious groups and VWOs to put together a memorable Chinese New Year celebration for 500 residents of Jalan Besar GRC and Potong Pasir SMC. Participating groups will each showcase special performances in a celebration of the different cultures, religions and dialect groups in Singapore. On 31 January 2016, about 1,000 residents from underprivileged families and needy elderly who are residing within the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Constituency will celebrate Chinese New Year at the Mass Reunion Dinner (千人团圆宴), an annual community initiative organised by KA-KS CCC. Dr Lily Neo (梁莉莉医生), Adviser to Jalan Besar GRC Grassroots Organizations (Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng) (惹兰勿刹集选区基层组织顾问(牛车水-金声)) said: “The Chinese New Year Celebrations in Singapore are a reminder of the richness and vibrancy of the Chinese culture. It is a festive occasion enjoyed and appreciated not only by the Chinese community but also other racial communities as well as overseas tourists in Singapore. This year, we are delighted to host the inaugural Harmony Night, which will bring together the various racial, religious and dialect groups in Singapore for the first time, adding a special meaning to the celebrations for the community. “We look forward to organising more of such events to promote closer bonding in the community. We would also like to thank our partners and stakeholders for their support, without whom a celebration of this scale would not have been possible,” said Dr Neo. Mr Kenneth Lim (林子敦), Director of Cultural Precincts, Singapore Tourism Board (文化景区发展署 长) said: “The Chinese New Year Celebrations in Chinatown have become a highly-anticipated festival that injects vibrancy to the precinct, and showcases to visitors the rich multicultural heritage of Singapore. It also plays a key role in bringing the local community, especially the younger generation, together to partake in the meaningful celebrations, and foster a deeper appreciation of the rich Chinatown heritage.”

RECORD-BREAKING NUMBER OF HANDCRAFTED LANTERNS




From 16 January to 8 March 2016, local and foreign visitors to Chinatown will be mesmerised by the magnificent parade of handcrafted lanterns that will transform the precinct into a heavenly garden filled with playful monkeys and peach trees that convey joy, longevity and prosperity. This year’s decorations, designed in partnership with final-year students from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), feature a total of 2,668 handcrafted lanterns in the shape of monkeys, peaches, spring blossoms and gold zodiac coins – the most number of customised lanterns to be produced for the Street Light-Up. This is the fifth year that KA-KS CCC is partnering SUTD for the annual event. This year’s dazzling display also features 28 mechanical monkey lanterns that will literally “bring to life” the street decorations.
For the first time, the public will be able to actively interact with the Street Light-Up through the “Mother Tree” (大地回春树), an interactive tree designed by SUTD students that will be situated on the Garden Bridge (above Eu Tong Sen Street and New Bridge Road). Simply post photos and videos of the Street Light-Up onto social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram with the hashtag #CNY2016SG. Lit in pink, every 18 posts with the hashtag will activate an 18-second light show of golden spotlights and fairy lights.

“MY FATHER TONGUE” EXHIBITION BY CHINATOWN HERITAGE CENTRE




To promote a deeper understanding and appreciation of how the different dialect groups – namely Cantonese, Hokkien and Teochew – celebrated Chinese New Year in the past, KA-KS CCC has partnered the Chinatown Heritage Centre to present a special exhibition from 28 January to 8 March 2016. Working with a group of final-year students from the NTU Wee Kim Wee School of Communication & Information, the exhibition, titled “My Father Tongue” (“我的父语”), will reveal interesting glimpses into the festive food, customs and special practices unique to the three main Chinese dialect groups in Singapore. As part of the exhibition, dialect workshops will also be conducted at the Chinatown Heritage Centre for youth and the public to sign up. There will also be a showcase of the traditional decorations used in the past during Chinese New Year while visi tors can pick up limitededition Chinese New Year souvenirs by local designers. Inspired by the memories of seniors in the Chinatown community and clan associations, this exhibition aims to enrich dialect culture in Singapore and promote inter-generational bonding. The exhibition marks the first of an exciting line-up of programmes planned for the rejuvenated Chinatown Heritage Centre, which reopened on 8 January 2016 after a year of renovation. The new Centre will feature a rich collection of personal stories and enriching programmes that paint an intimate portrayal of Chinatown, from its early days as a Chinese migrant settlement to today’s vibrant heritage precinct. 

OTHER EVENT HIGHLIGHTS




At the Official Light-Up and Opening Ceremony (牛车水农历新年庆祝活动开幕典礼与亮灯仪式) on 16 January 2016, visitors to Chinatown will be awed by talented performers from leading local and foreign troupes in a retelling of the famed Chinese folktale, “Journey to the West.” Daring displays of acrobatics will be accompanied by entertaining musical performances and LED light displays. In the lead-up to the Chinatown Chinese New Year Countdown Party (牛车水农历新年除夕夜派对) on 7 February 2016, visitors can also revel in the celebratory events such as the 9 th International Lion Dance Competition Ceremony (第九届牛车水新春国际狮王争霸邀请赛) that will see 14 top lion dance troupes from across eight countries pit their skills against each other on the meihuazhuang in an exciting and intense showcase of dexterity and agility to clinch the ultimate title of ‘King of the Lions’! With participation from troupes hailing from as far as China, this year’s competition will take place on two days, 23 and 24 January 2016, at a new venue, Hong Lim Park.
Other event highlights include the Festive Street Bazaar & Festive Carnival (年货市场及新春嘉年华 会) with 440 stalls selling a wide range of traditional and modern festive goodies, Nightly Stage Shows (综艺晚会) with cultural musical and entertainment performances, and the Chinatown Chinese New Year Walking Trail (牛车水农历新年文化之旅), a free walking tour open to Singaporeans and overseas visitors that will take participants through the Chinese enclave to learn more about the history and customs during Chinese New Year. 

 
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