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Rise to Good Fortune & Prosperity

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By James Seah

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The main attraction of the 13-metre-tall rooster at the junction of Eu Tong Sen Street, New Bridge Road and Upper Cross Street. (photo above).

 

The official light-up and opening ceremony was held on Saturday, 7 January, 2017 and will be followed by 7 weeks of the street light-up until 25 February, 2017. It brings to life the festive atmosphere in Chinatown at New Bridge Road, Eu Tong Sen Street, South Bridge Road and Garden Bridge.

 

This year’s Chinatown Chinese New Year Celebrations themed “Rise to Good Fortune and Prosperity” [金鸡报喜迎新春,狮城欢腾庆年] is organised by the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Citizens’ Consultative Committee (KA-KS CCC).

 

Working with students from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) for the sixth year to design the street light-up, this year’s elaborate display features about 5,500 handcrafted lanterns – the most ever made in the history of the Chinatown Festivals – and draws its inspiration from the Year of the Rooster. As day turns to night and the street light-up comes alive in a spectacular display of lights, visitors will be enthralled by a creative masterpiece that combines traditions with modern design.

 

The creative and innovative design skills of the young SUTD students are mentioned here .

 

Design Concept

Since the olden days, this year’s Chinese zodiac animal, the rooster, has been an important keeper of time. With the Chinese saying “日出而作,日落而息” (translated to work begins at sunrise and ends when the sunsets), the rooster plays an indispensable role in distinguishing between dawn and daybreak.

 

This year’s street light-up illustrates a linear progression of time through the life of the Rooster, and the important values it learns as it goes through different stages in life. Through various lantern set pieces (placed along the centre divider between New Bridge Road and Eu Tong Sen Street), each scene depicting a different value as the chick grows and matures into a majestic creature, symbolised by the impressive Rooster lantern centrepiece.

 

From 金鸡金蛋盛满盘 (From Abundance of Golden Eggs and Chicken), which represents the birth of the Rooster, five more values are illustrated:

While hanging above the streets are Peonies (牡丹花 or 畗贵花) and Peach Blossom (桃花) lanterns that adorn Eu Tong Sen Street and South Bridge Road, respectively, heralding wealth, prosperity and peace for the New Year. 

 

The Lanterns in the Day

 

The Lanterns in the Night

 

“Early Birds” in the Queue

Many “early birds” local and overseas visitors were in the queue to wait patiently for 2-3 hours before the event started at 6:00 pm.

 

“Long time no see”! Greetings and Best Wishes “Gong Xi Fa Cai”!

It was 3 years ago since I last participated in the Chinatown Chinese New Year Light-Up in 2013. I posted the blog here .

 

Final touch-up and group photos of the performers before the show started.

 

The brightly-lit main stage for the street light-up.

 

Highlights of the spectacular performances 

 

Find out more photos and videos at http://www.facebook.com/Chinatown.Festivals