Carnivals and Entertainment Programmes
Seven large-scale carnivals were organised during the year to celebrate traditional festivals and major festive days. The New Year's Eve Countdown Carnival 2008, held in Sha Tin Park and the Sha Tin Town Hall Plaza cum City Art Square attracted 70 000 visitors. The large crowd was entertained by a diverse programme comprising standard and Latin American dance, jazz and modern dance, a cappella singing, acrobatics, percussion and live band performances by local arts groups and talented young artists. In addition, energetic roving artists guided the public through the world-class sculptures embellishing City Art Square. The climax of the evening came with the countdown to the New Year, followed by spectacular pyrotechnics displays on stage and around the rooftops of the Sha Tin Town Hall complex.
|Different styles of standard and Latin American dance performed by the Hong Kong DanceSport Association at the New Year's Eve Countdown Carnival 2008.|
The Department presented large-scale Lantern Carnivals in celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival and the Lunar New Year. Highlights of these two Lantern carnivals were Chinese ethnic dance and traditional arts performances by Mainland Chinese performing groups from Guizhou and Zhejiang, sponsored by the Bureau of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Cultural Affairs, Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China. In addition, large-scale thematic lantern exhibitions at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza during both festivals, and at the West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade during the Mid-Autumn Festival, captivated locals and tourists alike.
|The spectacular lantern installation at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza attracted the admiration of thousands of visitors during the 2009 Lunar New Year Spectacular Lantern Exhibition.|
In co-operation with the District Councils, 615 regular free entertainment performances were put on for audiences of all ages throughout Hong Kong, usually at the weekends and during holidays. These free programmes included traditional Chinese performing arts, music, dance and family entertainment. The Asia Ethnic Cultural Programme series and the Concert in the Park programme were presented in collaboration with the Consulates-General of India, the Republic of Indonesia and the Philippines and enhanced cultural exchange with the Indian, Indonesian and Filipino communities in Hong Kong. The Youth Band Marathon provided a platform for young amateur pop-rock bands to show off their talents.In 2008-09, the carnivals, special events and district-wide free entertainment programmes organised by the Department attracted an audience of 914 000.