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The Chinese New Year Festival is the biggest celebration of the Lunar New Year outside of Asia, according to City of Sydney, and has more than 60 events over 17 days. At the launch of the 2010 celebration, a dancer (pictured here) performs on 12 February at the Festival Markets in Belmore Park near the city’s Central Station. The festival’s colourful emblem celebrating 2010’s Year of the Tiger provides a backdrop.
Two ‘Digital Tigers’ are located outside Customs House near Sydney’s Circular Quay. “This installation is inspired by traditional Chinese lantern-making methods and zhezhi – the art of paper folding – more popularly known as origami,” says the City of Sydney. “Developed with cutting-edge design and the latest in fabrication technology, this spectacular installation combines tradition with innovation, bringing East and West together.”
An aerial performer from the celebration’s 2010 partner city of Chongqing, in Western China.
Highly colourful performers with painted faces (pictured here in the 2008 parade) are from the 2008 partner city of Shaanxi in China.
“The annual Chinese New Year Parade has become a major event on Sydney’s cultural calendar and is seen by millions of people in Asia,” says Sydney’s Mayor Clover Moore. More than 100,000 spectators attended the 2010 Twilight Parade, held on 21 February.
“These gorgeous schoolkids were part of a travelling group from Guangxi in China,” says the City of Sydney’s Keeley Irvin. They were a feature of the 2009 parade, held in the evening for the first time in the parade’s 13-year history.
More striking performers with painted faces (pictured here) are from Sydney’s 2008 parade partner city of Shaanxi in China.
From dusk, the streets of Sydney’s CBD, near Chinatown, are transformed. Brightly coloured dancers show us their moves in the 2009 parade.
Food plays a major role in the celebration, with the dinner on the eve of the Lunar New Year one of the most important family gatherings of the year. Australia’s resident Chinese still retain strong familial ties as part of their culture.
The Dragon Boat Races were held on 27 February, 2010, at Sydney’s Darling Harbour. The races (pictured here in 2009) feature more than 3000 competitors racing brightly coloured long boats.
The festival celebrations showcase the culture of Chinese people not just in Sydney, but across Australia. “New South Wales has the largest Chinese community in Australia with more than 290,000 people of Chinese Ancestry across the state,” says Kristina Keneally, Premier of NSW. “We are proud of the great contribution the Chinese community has made to New South Wales.”
Home Topics History & Culture Gallery: Celebrating Chinese New Year 2010, Sydney-style
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