Carnivals and Entertainment Programmes
Seven large carnivals were organised during the year to celebrate traditional festivals and major festive days. The New Year’s Eve Countdown Carnival 2012, held in Sha Tin Park and at the Sha Tin Town Hall Plaza cum City Art Square, attracted 65 000 visitors. Audiences were entertained by a mix of programmes by youth champions of various disciplines along with talented artists, who delivered performances of Chinese percussion, band music, dances, magic, pop songs and yo yo skills. The evening climaxed with the New Year Countdown, followed by a spectacular pyrotechnics display over the Sha Tin Town Hall complex.
To celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival and the Lunar New Year, the LCSD organised a number of large-scale lantern carnivals. Highlights included some spectacular ethnic dances and acrobatic displays by groups from Hunan and Yunan Honghezhou. These were sponsored by the Office for Cultural Affairs of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Regions of the Mainland Ministry of Culture.
The carnivals also featured examples of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) elements such as a fire dragon dancing parade, demonstrations of traditional lantern-making by local masters, and handcraft demonstrations by Guangdong and Macao artists. During both festivals, thematic lantern exhibitions were staged at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza, captivating thousands of locals and tourists.
To foster good relationships between local people and other ethnic Asians, the LCSD, in co-operation with the Consulate-General of the Philippines, organised a Concert in the Park featuring Filipino artists. Another event, the Asian Ethnic Cultural Performances, was organised in co-operation with the Consulates-General of Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Japan, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
Following their successful launch in 2009-10, three Community Thematic Carnivals were held this year in Southern District, Sai Kung and the New Territories West Region, and included performances and community participation activities.
The Youth Band Marathon and Marching Band Parade continued to provide platforms for talented youth.
Funded by and run in co-operation with the District Councils, 636 regular free entertainment performances were offered throughout Hong Kong for audiences of all ages during the year. Usually held on weekends and public holidays, these free programmes included traditional Chinese performing arts, music, dance, and family entertainment.
In 2012-13, the LCSD organised a total of 662 carnivals, special events and free entertainment programmes, attracting around 1 033 980 people.