Founded by Sifu Jimmy Chan in the early 90’s, our club consists of our family members and close friends who grew up together learning martial arts and Chinese Lion Dance. We have performed for various events throughout Montreal, Ontario and Toronto. We have a passion for performing and our goal is to share our Chinese culture and heritage with the world by performing at events.
The Chinese Lion Dance
History of Lion Dancing
The Lion Dance is a Chinese tradition with over two thousand years of history. There are many stories of how the lion dance was created. One of these stories is about a beast that frequently attacked a small village in China. To keep the beast away from their village, the villagers constructed a costume that resembled the beast and played loud instruments to scare the beast away. Their trick worked and the beast never came to their village again. Since then, the lion dance has been performed to scare away evil spirits, to bring good fortune, happiness and prosperity.
Lion dancing involves two performers, a drummer, a cymbal player and a gong player. The two performers control the head and tail of the lion while the drum, cymbals and gong are played in accordance to the movements of the lion. On many occasions, there is also a big-headed Buddha (Dai do fut), carrying a fan who plays with the lion and directs it to the green lettuce and red envelope. The lettuce eating part of the dance, also called “Choy Cheng, involves having the lion chew up some lettuce and spitting it back out into pieces. Spitting the lettuce out symbolizes the showering of good fortune, happiness and prosperity. Attached to the lettuce, is a red envelope with money inside. The lion will take the red envelope as a gift. The red envelope is a sign of gratitude for blessing the occasion with good fortune, happiness and prosperity.
Our club’s founder Jimmy Chan has been involved with martial arts and Chinese Lion Dance since he was a child. He is a leader of Montreal’s Chinese community and is the president of Montreal’s Chan Associations. Jimmy has worked as an artistic director for Cirque du Soleil and is also an actor, film director and stuntman.
In the Lion Dance world, Jimmy is well-known for his unique drumming style which he created and named Goo Mo Do (The Way Of The Drumbeat). Goo Mo Do incorporates percussion styles from all different cultures and blends them into a unique style as a way to represent diversity. Jimmy has performed along side many other drummers from different communities to demonstrate that the language of drumming transcends all cultural borders.
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