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Festive drum and lantern dance of Anhui coming soon

The Anhui Song and Dance Ensemble Festive Drum and Lantern Folk Art Troupe will perform three song and dance shows in Hong Kong with lavish fans and umbrellas accompanying the folk tunes.

The shows, entitled“The Joyous Dance of Festive Drum and Lantern”, feature the folk art of Huagudeng.

Huagudeng (or literally, flower-drum-lantern) is a vernacular art form of the Huai River region in Anhui Province. It originated in the Qing Dynasty and features mass folk dances with drums, gongs and lantern songs. The simple, optimistic and festive folk characters are interwoven into the music, turning the dance into an outstanding folk art.

The acrobatic male lead is called“the drum-shelf”, while the female is called the“cymbidium”. She sings and dances with handkerchiefs, fans and umbrellas. The dances are traditionally performed in lantern-lit squares.

Huagudeng was included in the Preservation Programme of the National and Folk Culture of China (PPNFCC) in 2004, and will be included on the list for proclamation as part of the“Intangible Heritage of Humanity”.

The programme includes award-winning pieces“Song of the Huai River” (music and dance of Southern Anhui),“Lantern”,“The Land of Drums”and“Orchid Poem”.

The Anhui Song and Dance Ensemble was founded in 1956. Over the years, it has built up a rich repertoire of folk songs and folk dances. The troupe is dedicated to researching and performing Huagudeng.

Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the shows will be staged at 8pm on May 5, 6 and 7, at the Auditoriums of Yuen Long Theatre, Ko Shan Theatre and the Theatre of Sai Wan Ho Civic Centre respectively. Tickets priced from $90 to $160 are now available at all URBTIX outlets. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistant (CSSA) recipients (limited tickets for students and CSSA recipients are available on a first-come, first-served basis). Please see the group booking discount scheme in the programme leaflet.

For programme enquiries, please call 2268 7323 or visit the following websites: . For reservations, please call 2734-9009. For credit card bookings, please call 2111 5999. To book online, please visit, .

Ends/Thursday, March 30, 2006
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