New Zealand's biggest Chinese New Year festival grows in size

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2016-01-22 09:31:00

New Zealand's biggest Chinese New Year festival grows in size

Auckland's Chinese Lantern Festival will run from Feb 18 to 21 at the centraal Auckland Domain. [Photo/]

A host of Chinese talent has been lined up to perform at New Zealand's biggest Chinese New Year event, which is being expanded this year to accommodate a greater variety of performers and visitors.

The Auckland City Council said on Jan 21 that the Auckland Lantern Festival, which will run from Feb. 18 to 21, would be moved from a city park to the central Auckland Domain this year in anticipation of tens of thousands of festival-goers.

The celebration of Chinese New Year would feature traditional and contemporary Chinese culture, with more than 800 lanterns, including new monkey lanterns to welcome the Year of the Monkey, and the grand finale fireworks display.

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), which presents the festival in partnership with Asia New Zealand Foundation, said some of China's top performers would be appearing.

They included, Second Hand Rose, one of Beijing's biggest alternative rock bands, ATEED general manager destination Vivien Bridgwater said in a statement.

The Shanghai Puppet Theatre, one of China's best-known puppet troupes, would perform an excerpt from the popular Chinese legend of the Monkey King.

The Guangdong Traditional Music Philharmonic trio and the Guangzhou Acrobatic Arts Theatre would also be staging performances.

Asia New Zealand Foundation chairman John Luxton said the visiting Chinese performers would give festival-goers a taste of centuries-old Chinese culture as well as the country's contemporary music scene.

"Thanks to the support of the Chinese Ministry of Culture and provincial Chinese governments, Aucklanders have been able to experience an amazing variety of art forms from China over the past 17 years," Luxton said in the statement.

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