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The Dublin Chinese New Year Festival


The Dublin Chinese New Year Festival

Today, February 8th 2016 is the Chinese New Year of the Monkey.  The monkey is intelligent, curious, witty, and sociable. It is the most fun loving out of all the Chinese star signs.  This is the 9th year of the Dublin Chinese New Year Festival (DCNYF) which is supported by the Dublin City Council. The festival has helped to connect and deepen the relationship between the Chinese and Irish people. This two- week event will include story-telling, Chinese opera singing and music, arts and crafts, calligraphy, lion dancing, dragon parades, and Chinese cuisine.  It will run until the 21st of February 2016.

The Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival.  It starts on the 23rd day of the 12th lunar month of the Chinese calendar.  In China the festival lasts between two and three weeks.  It ends on the 15th day of the first lunar month, in the following year, in the Chinese calendar.  The origin of the Chinese New Year is dated back to over 4000 years ago.  It isn’t clear exactly when it started to be celebrated, but the Chinese think it was during a religious ceremony, at the end of the Shang dynasty.   In 1911 the Chinese began to follow the Gregorian calendar so the Chinese New Year was renamed the Spring Festival.


Today’s celebrations:

Colours and motifs of earthly delights

Venue:            Pearse Library

Date:               Monday 8th February

Time:              2pm

Cost:               Free

(For adults only)  Places limited, booking essential.

Phone:             01 674 4888.

You will discover how the colours that appear on Chinese textiles, paintings, ceramics and jewellery all have meaning and express different messages. You will explore the decoration of artefacts, and discuss the symbolic meanings of them. You will have the opportunity to design a Chinese lucky charm knot.


Asian studies public lecture hosted by Trinity centre for Asian studies

Venue:             Neill Theatre, Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin

Date:               Monday 8th February

Time:               6:30pm

Cost:                Free

(No booking required)


Experts will discuss historical and contemporary topics in Chinese, Korean and Japanese Studies.

H.e. Jianguo XU, The Chinese Ambassador to Ireland says:  “The Chinese New Year, also known as “Spring Festival” and “Lunar New Year”, is the most important traditional festival for the Chinese across the globe.  Each and every year, this time-honoured festival is celebrated by hundreds of millions of people as a joyous occasion for homecoming, family reunion, friendship renewal, and exchanging good wishes and blessings for health and happiness.”

“2016 is a Year of the Monkey.  Partly because of the charming and captivating character Monkey King in “Journey to the West”, a well-known and hugely popular 16th-century classic Chinese mythological novel, the monkey is adored in the Chinese culture as an auspicious animal of kindness, faithfulness, resourcefulness, and humour.  On this special occasion, as Chinese Ambassador to Ireland, I join my fellow Chinese in this country in wishing Ireland and the Irish people peace and prosperity, and wishing for continued development and new progress in the friendly China-Ireland relations.  On this special occasion, my wife Ni Li and my Embassy colleagues join me in wishing members of the Chinese community here, as well as people of other ethnic origins, a joyful and fruitful Year of the Monkey.”

Michael D. Higgins, The President of Ireland says: “I am delighted to send my best wishes to all members of the Chinese community in Ireland as you celebrate the commencement of the Year of the Monkey.  In the Chinese zodiac the Monkey is a symbol of good fortune and is characterised by its inventiveness, imagination and resourceful nature. 2016 is an important year of commemoration here in Ireland, and also a year when we look to ever more purposefully and confidently into our future as a progressive, fully inclusive and modern nation.

This year of the Monkey is a valuable reminder of the positive contribution the Chinese community make to Irish society, and the important role you will in crafting such a shared future; one which all our citizens can flourish. May I wish you all a happy and prosperous New Year.”

This festival is guaranteed to be a fun filled, and educational event for the entire family.

To find out more information about this event contact:

Dublin City Council Arts Office

The  Lab, Foley Street, Dublin 1

Phone:             (01) 222 5455



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