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Singapore Tian Eng Dragon & Lion Dance Centre is a well-known and an international award winning troupe. Since the founding of our troupe in 1987, Tian Eng has won numerous awards both for lion dance as well as dragon dance competitions. We are honored to be one of the few troupes that managed to get a double champion for the Traditional Lion Dance competition both in the semis and finals in the 2006 National Lion Dance Competition, one of Singapore major championship for lion dance. We have over the years also won numerous medals for our art of lion and dragon dance. This is a testimony of Tian Eng‘s continuous strive to promote this traditional Chinese art and at the same time keep our traditional culture alive.

OUR Values

Tian Eng also maintain a strict discipline in instilling a positive attitude and good traditional values. We believed very strongly in our mission that good traditional values like discipline, respect, perseverance be inculcated at the same time as we learn the intricate steps of the lion dance and the team coordination of the dragon dance. Our students are taught the good old values of our forefathers who brought the invaluable art to us and this have always been a guiding principle in Tian Eng.

History of Lion Dance

The Art of Chinese Lion Dance goes back to the same time as Chinese history. Chinese lion dance may have been influenced by cultures outside China during the Han and Tang Dynasty (618 to 906AD) where there was a cross fertilization of cultures between the Tang imperial court and other cultures. The lion dance then was performed for the royal audience of the emperor and therefore was considered a ritual that seeks to bless the imperial rule by getting rid of all obstacles while showering blessings and prosperity for the good of the whole imperial empire.

However, there was also a folklore interpretation of the Chinese lion art preceding the historical fact about lion dance in ancient China. A beast called “nian” used to cause havoc in villages and the people masked themselves into a creature that resembled this beast succeeded in scaring it away and from that time onwards, the culture of lion dancing became a tradition of happiness, joy and celebration of all things good for the common people as well.

No matter whether one subscribes to the historical or mythological interpretation of the Chinese lion dance, it always symbolizes happiness, joy, prosperity, luck and success. The Chinese Lion Dance is therefore a dichotomy of all that is good versus the bad. For every Chinese household, any joyous occasion of great significance will never be completed without the colorful lion dance, accompanied by deafening clashes of drums and cymbals. It is a sight that befits all, for those who watches this ancient traditional performance will be lucky too.

Moreover, the art of the Chinese lion dance also reflect the Chinese traditional culture and history. For instance, Da Tou Fuo or big head Buddha is a reflection of Buddhism in Chinese culture. In traditional lion dance troupes, specific lion heads and performances were also based on Chinese history such as the Romance of the Three Kingdoms (San Guo). With the triple amalgamation of the three pillars of Chinese traditions (Culture, History and Religion) into a spectacular performances that also combines martial arts and acrobats, the lion dance will and always be a crowd puller.