Organisers of this year's Fish and Dragon Festival (from left): political counsellor at the Embassy of the People's Republic of China Zou Xi, Aja Productions' Adisa "Aja" Andwele and treasurer of the Chinese Barbados Association Philomena Lee. (Picture by Ricardo Leacock.)
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The Fish And Dragon Festival now in its fourth year, continues to grow and attract a large number of patrons say its organisers. This year, the Wildey Gymnasium, newly refurbished with assistance from the Chinese government, will be the stage for the festival, which gives Barbados and China the opportunity to learn about each other’s culture, food and traditions.
With the staging of the festival coinciding with Agrofest, the organisers said they anticipate both festivals will still be well attended. However, Adisa Aja Andwele of Aja Productions said the move of the festival to the Gymnasium was in part based on the staging of Agrofest, which is held at Queens’ Park, obliquely opposite the Church Village Green of the Central Bank, where festival was held for three years.
Speaking Wednesday from the Chinese Embassy, he noted that the dates were unavoidable since the major act, Beautiful Tianjin Art Troupe, which is touring the United States, was only available for that date. He said he did not expect a major clash since Agrofest lasts three days, while the festival was only a four-hour show.
Political counsellor at the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China, Zou Xi, said the Chinese New Year, The Year Of The Dog, was slated to start on February 16, and the Fish And Dragon Festival was a taste of the Chinese festival celebrated for over 4 000 years.
“It is the most traditional, most remarkable and grandest festival in China. Today it is celebrated in more and more countries. It is the same here in Barbados. More Barbadian people get familiar and fall in love with Chinese New Year and its culture,” Xi said.
Patrons will be treated to the acrobatic, dancing and singing performances of the Beautiful Tianjin Art Troupe. Additionally, treasurer of the Chinese Barbados Association, Philomena Lee, said food will be a highlight as many members who own restaurants will have a variety of traditional Chinese dishes available.
There will also be a focus on Chinese language, games, martial arts, and craft while the local tuk band and food will be featured. (LK)