Chingay Parade 2011

 Held annually in Singapore,  the Chingay parade's origins can be traced back to around a hundred years ago where it began as  celebration by the Chinese in honor of their deities and the procession of Guanyin ( Chinese Goddess or Mercy) and a float decorating competition in Penang.

Singapore's foray into Chingay  was first held  as a result of a ban on firecrackers, so as not to dampen the mood for the Chinese new year, the people's association and National Pugilistic Association of Singapore organised a street parade.  Over the years it began to attract the Malay and Indian cultures of Singapore becoming what is perhaps one of the worlds most dazzling spectacles of colour, sound, and energy.  It has grown in number every year and this year saw some 8000 performers from dozens of cultures take to the streets.

A loud bang, the familiar sound of firecrackers and rumbles, lots of them! These rumbles were the sound of Harleys, a dozen or so of them each with a bunny girl sat behind leather clad motorcyclists and a collection of classic automobiles marked the start of Chingay 2011.  What followed next was a parade of Stilt walkers,  Storm troopers! Yes, that's right! and dancers from  Taiwan, India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Germany, Mexico and Japan. Each culture bought their own unique display of rhythm and dance to the parade, wowing the crowd from every corner of the street. The buzz was amazing, my camera was going into overdrive at this point.  The highlight of the parade however was the parade's first and as a matter of fact the world's first display of an 88 meter long aerial dragon that was bought in from China,  it was a truly a magnificent piece of art to bear witness to, the whole crowd was just in awe at the sheer size of it.

The parade lasted  for approximately two hours before ending with the parade's first traveling dance competition in which a thousand or more performers took to the street each one giving it there best in the hopes of winning the competition.

Last night I witnessed  one of the worlds most colourful  spectacles and I would gladly bare witness to this event again.

Harleys & Bunnies

Rolls Royce & Beauty Queen

She waves to her adoring fans

Classic Mercedes with two sweethearts

Isn't she cute?

Storm Troopers are the new Police force in Singapore

A fire breathing dragon, sadly they didn't blow flames when nearing the crowd for safety.

A Chinese girl performs a flower dance.

A very flexible ballerina

Dance troupe from Sri Lanka

Acrobatic Taiwanese Cheerleaders.

Skirt twirling

Viva Mexico

Performers from the street dance competition

The 88m long draong

The head of the beast

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