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Happy Chinese New Year 2016

Chinese New Year is always a bustling time while everyone prepares to usher in the new year (based on the Chinese calender). It stretches over 15 days, started with the reunion dinner on the eve of Chinese New Year, to Chap Goh Meh (Lantern Festival)  on the 15th day. Chinese families prepare by doing a thorough cleaning of their homes, and decorating it with the auspicious colours of red and gold. They also purchase new clothes and shoes, which symbolizes a new start.
The eve of Chinese New Year is especially important as this is the time that families come together to eat and welcome the new year.  This short film, The Reunion Dinner by Anthony Chen, shows us how the celebration of Chinese New Year in Singapore has evolved over the years.
The Chinese are particularly strict on taboos, so do take note of these on the first day of Chinese New Year:
DON’T
  • wash your hair, or you will wash away good luck for the new year
  • wear white or black (it is considered the colours of mourning)
  • do cleaning or sweep the floor, or you will “sweep away your luck”
  • say the number ‘4’ (which sounds like ‘death’ in Mandarin)
  • tell ghost stories
  • cook
  • use knives or scissors, or you may cut off fortune
  • lend or borrow money
Even if you are not Chinese, you still get to join in the festivities; watch Lion and Dragon Dances, listen to Chinese New Year songs, or even receive angbaos (red packets of money usually given by married couples to children, or young working adults to their elders)!
Despite being Chinese myself, I still have not gotten used to the high-pitched instruments and singing in Chinese New Year songs. But I do enjoy this a cappella version of popular Chinese New Year tunes.

Presenting Colour of Voices, a Malaysian a cappella group made up of Asnal as the lead, Ikhwan (Acai) as the tenor, Jo (Juhairee) as the baritone, Shark (Jaswan) as the bass and Jeffery (Tuxy TuxBoNic) as the beatboxer!

Here’s wishing you a very prosperous and happy Chinese New Year 2016, from all of us at Bloom School of Music & Arts!