Hundreds of festival goers gathered at Chandos Pattison Auditorium on Saturday, Jan. 21 to ring in the lunar new year at the Fraser Valley Chinese Cultural Association’s annual Spring Festival Charity Gala.
It was a night of laughter and fun: a family affair of colourful, dramatic performances that were at times poignant and comic.
A unique mix of formal gala and family concert, the night featured performers in elegant, ornate costumes who executed delicate choreography and children who danced, played music, acted out comedy skits and raced up and down the aisles of the auditorium.
Chief Director Dong Yang delivered on his promise to bring more colour, lights and visual impact than ever before.
The festival featured musicians Zhang Hui, Zhu Naijun and Luo Ling, Mandarin and Cantonese songs, performances to American top-40 hits, skits and small plays.
Prizes were given out throughout the evening. In a modern twist on an old tradition, red pocket prizes were given away through WeChat, an instant messaging app.
To commemorate the Year of the Rooster, several prizes were given away by smashing “chicken eggs.”
Audience members shattered large, gold and silver props with wooden mallets to uncover a slip of paper revealing their prize. Gift certificates, money, scarves and electronics went home with lucky participants.
The FVCCA donated a portion of the ticket proceeds to the Sunshine Angel children’s art program, which gives opportunities to local young artists. According to organizer Qing Ping, the festival is the largest public charity event in the Surrey Chinese community.