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This Chinese cultural tradition dates back to ancient times. It is usually performed at the reception and it is a wonderful treat for all of the guests at your wedding. The Lion is a symbol that represents both bravery and prosperity. The dance is performed to bestow a blessing upon the newlywed couple and many believe that the dance chases away evil spirits who wish to destroy any happiness.
The wedding lion dance or performance itself is very loud and festive. There is always live drumming, .with other percussion instruments, like the cymbals and the gong to compliment the beats
There are many types of lions and styles of dance. The differences originate from the region of China where the performers are from. However, the basics remain the same. The bride and groom feed the Lions "Choy Cheng" or "Eating of the green". This is usually lettuce or bak choy combined with a lucky red envelope. Usually, after the lions eat the greens the spit it back out by tossing loose leaves to guests to spread the evening's good luck. At the very end, of the dance, the lions often present a red scroll that contains an optimistic message, such as "1000 Years of Happiness"
The Wedding Lion Dance is oftentimes mistaken for the dragon dance. The Lion Dance is different from the dragon dance in that it is operated by just two people whereas the dragon takes 9 or more people to operate. For the Lion Dance one performer operates the head while the other operates the tail
Here Are 3 Things You Should Consider Before Booking A Troupe To Perform You Wedding Lion Dance. Here Are 3 Tips To Think About Before Booking A Lion Dance For Your Wedding.
1. ) Have Someone Assigned To Lead The Lions Along The Pathway You Want Them To Take
Sometimes, lion dance performances can get a little hectic. Especially if it is the first time you’ve ever had one. Throughout the years of performing, we have found out one great tip that will make your lion dance experience a great one. If there is a path that you want the lions to go through, like walking in between tables or even just running to the dance floor, the most organized way is to have someone leading the lions the way you want them to go.
Just make sure it is a person who knows exactly how you want the performance to go. This also helps the team not to be as confused during the performance. Try it out for your next performance!
2. ) Know What You Want
Know how elaborate of a performance you want. Do you need 7 lions to perform? or are two enough? Do you want the lions to introduce the newlywed couple or do you want a full performance of 17 to 20 minutes?
Most Lion Dance Troupes are willing to modify the performance according to your needs. For example, if you wanted to have the lions honor the parents of the bride and groom, that can be done if you notify the troupe beforehand.
3.) Make It Interactive For Your Guests
One great way to make your wedding lion dance much more interactive is to hand out red envelopes to your guests.
The lion will eat the envelopes right out of their hands.
Inside of each red envelope is a donation to the lion dance club or troupe. It doesn't have to be much $5 will do fine, or if you are on a budget you can maybe give just $2.
Either way, your guest will get to interact with the lions and it will become a much more fun experience for everyone.