Annual lantern show sheds new light on ancient culture

Updated: Jan 26, 2024 By Wang Xin China Daily Print
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The annual Yuyuan Garden Lantern Show kicks off in Shanghai on Sunday to welcome the upcoming Year of the Dragon. [Photo by Gao Erqiang/China Daily]

The annual Yuyuan Garden Lantern Show kicked off in Shanghai on Sunday to celebrate the upcoming Year of the Dragon, which begins on Feb 10.

The 40-day event at the major tourism destination features a diverse collection of lanterns that take the zodiac creature as its theme. It's the 29th edition of the show, which was inscribed on the national intangible cultural heritage list in 2008.

Like the previous edition, this year's show, which features thousands of lanterns, is also inspired by Shanhaijing, or The Classic of Mountains and Seas, a major source of Chinese mythology that dates back more than 2,000 years.

"This year's (show) depicts magical scenes where Chinese dragons live in harmony with aquatic plants and creatures," says Yin Ge, general manager of Shanghai Yuyuan Tourist Mart culture and branding department.

"It expresses the broad-mindedness of Chinese people to dance and prosper with people from other cultures, and showcases our traditional culture's unfading charm," she says.

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