Lion Dance Stories Updates (General)
Difference in Lion Dance
Revolution of Lion making
Superstitious & Taboo
The Crafting Behind the Art
Branching Out From The Cantonese Lions
Lion Dancers Column (Coming Soon)
- The Basics For Lion Dancing
- Advance Lion Dancing Move
- The Basics For Musician
-Simple Equipment Repairing
Ethics and Perception
The Lion Dance was created during the days of the Han Dynasty.and it was used for the purposes of entertaining distinguise guest, official functions, festival celebrations, and religious rituals. But, when it was passed down to the days of the Ching Dynasty, lion dance has been misused as a fighting and rebelling props. Ethically, it was not proper for the lion dance to be used as a mechanism for fighting and conspiracy act. The rebellions of the Ching Dynasty formed lion dance group to used it as a moving mechanism for recruiting members and to send secret messages for the purpose of toppling the government.
During the early days, Lion Dance was very much linked together with the Chinese martial arts, popularly known as Kung Fu in Chinese. To become a lion dancer, one must possess the Chinese martial arts skills. The better you are, in your martial art skills, the better you will be, as a lion dancer. During those days, there were many Chinese martial art schools and academies and most of them have their own lion dance troupe. Each of the school had their own territory to control. The power, strength and the rank of a Chinese martial art school were determined by the size and the number of territories the school had owned and controlled. Ambitious school head will always try to invade into other schools, in order to take over their territory. That is why the school will always fight among each other. Very often, the schools used their lion dance troupe to challenge and fight, just to make it looked legal in the eyes of the law. Here again, lion dance was used to be involved in a brutal gang fight. Ethically, it is not right. This had projected a very bad perception for the lion dance activities. In the eyes of the society, lion dance activities were not viewed as cultural related activity but gangster related. It had created a very negative impact on the lion dance activities. People start to shun away from the lion dance activities. Parents refused to allow their children to get involved in the lion dance. The lion dance activities in Malaysia was banned for almost two decades due to social and political reasons. It was the 2nd Prime Minister of Malaysia, the late Tun Razak who lifted the ban of the lion dance activities after his visits in China in the mid seventies. In Indonesia, the lion dance was banned for more than thirty years, due to racial problem. The ban was lifted in 1999 during the time of President Abdurrahman Wahid.
Today, the lion dance is viewed as a cultural sports. Every year there are numerous competitions held at different countries.The most prestigious competition for the lion dance is the World Lion Dance Championship which is held yearly. In this competition, there are more than thirty participating teams from all over world taking part in this event. May be one day, Lion Dance will be included as one of the event in the Olympic.
WATCH THIS RELATED VIDEO ABOUT NEGETIVITY ON LION DANCE
The negative perceptions of the Public on lion dance
THE REVIVAL OF LION DANCE IN MALAYSIA
Lion dance was banned in Malaysia during the time of its first Prime Minister, the late Tunku Abdul Rahman between 1960’s till early 1970’s.During that time, Malaysia was troubled by the communist related activities, causing a lot of gang fights in the country. In order to curb this social ill activity, the government banned all group activities in the country and lion dance was included. However, the ill fate of the lion dance changed, when the 2nd Malaysian Prime Minister, the late Tun Razak went to China on a Diplomatic Relation Mission, in the early 70’s. In fact he was the first Malaysian Prime Minister to visit China. He was grandly welcomed by the Chinese Government. When he touched down at the Chinese airport, he saw many Chinese people waving the Malaysian flags. A few groups of lions dancers came to greet him. He was fascinated by the group of lion dances and curious to know the meaning of the lion dance, he asked one of his Chinese Minister who followed him to China. “What are those activities stand for ?” His minister explained to him that those are the lion dance and it is in the Chinese culture to use such activity to welcome and to entertain their Honorable and Distinguish guests. He also asked his minister why there was no such activity in Malaysia. His minister replied that this activity was banned. many years ago. He then ordered his minister to sent a telegram back to Malaysia to lift the ban and revived the lion dance activity. At that time the lion dance activities in Malaysia had almost reached to the stage of extinction. To revive it was not easy at that time. Most of the people have quit from doing this activities. However, through the hard work and efforts put in by the members of the Lion and Dragon Dance Federation, the Lion started to roar and dance again. Yes ! The lion dance is revived in Malaysia again Thanks to the Late Tun Razak, the savior of the Malaysian Lion Dance. From then on, lion dance activities began to accelerate without stopping. Today, Malaysia have earned herself a name, “THE LAND OF THE LION DANCE KING”.
This Video Shows How Difficult To Do Lion Dance In Malaysia
During The Early Days
This Video Shows How Lion Dance Came Back To Live In Malaysia
THE REVIVAL OF LION DANCE IN INDONESIA
When the Late Suharto became the President of Indonesia in 1965, there was a racial crisis immerged in Indonesia. They called it the anti Chinese crisis. During that time, people of the Chinese origin were compelled to changed their Chinese name to Indonesian name and they must also adapt themselves to the Indonesian culture and life style. The Chinese people were not allowed to speak, write or communicate in any dialect of the Chinese language. Anyone caught doing so will be Punished. All Chinese related culture, celebrations, festivals, sports, martial art, arts and crafts, religions, books and activities were banned. Sign board with Chinese characters were removed. Many Chinese were killed due to rioting. Many left the country, especially the rich and THE LION WENT INTO A” COMA” AND IT LAID MOTIONLESS FOR MORE THAN THIRTY YEARS, from 1965 until Abdurrahman Wahid became the President of Indonesia in October 1999. He lifted the ban on all the Chinese activities and gave the freedom to the Chinese people in Indonesia to live their life on their own life style. The Chinese New Year was declared a National Festival. From then on, the Chinese culture, language, arts and crafts, festivals, religions and the Lion dance were reactivated and brought back to life in Indonesia. Many thanks to President Abdurrahman Wahid..