1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026
According to Chinese tradition, people born in the year of the horse are energetic, independent, and impatient. They are also avid travelers, great communicators, clever, and kind to others. Celebrities born in the year of the horse include Salma Hayek, Sandra Day O'Connor, Harrison Ford, Gordon Ramsay, the late Nelson Mandela and Shel Silverstein, and Philadelphia native son Kobe Bryant.
— from The Chinese Zodiac
PHILADELPHIA, PA—Gallop into the excitement and potential of the new year by ringing in the Year of the Horse at the Penn Museum's 33rd Annual Chinese New Year Celebration on Saturday, January 25, 2014, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. This daylong extravaganza includes martial arts demonstrations, dance performances, calligraphy, language and tangram workshops, family crafts—and a grand finale lion dance performance. The celebration is free with Museum admission donation ($15, general admission; $13, seniors [65+]; $10, children [6-17] and full-time students [with ID]; free to children under 5, members, active U.S. Military, and PennCard holders). Special offer: If you were born in the Year of the Horse (1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002) and can prove it (or even if you're an expectant mom due in 2014), you can gallop on in for free—when you bring at least one non-Horse paying guest with you!
Special presentations bring the sights, sounds, and wonders of China to the Museum in time to join the nearly one-sixth of the world's population in celebrating the traditional Chinese New Year.
Chinese painting instructor Onlei Annie Jung leads a drop-in calligraphy workshop between 11:00 am and 12:30 pm, demonstrating basic stroke techniques for guests.
At 11:30 am, the young girls of the MeiMei Dance Troupe interpret legendary Chinese folk tales, and the members of the University of Pennsylvania Chinese Dance Club delight with a repertoire of Yange Fan, Dai, Miao, and classical styles of dance.
Qin Qian and local musician and instructor Kurt Jung will perform traditional and modern Chinese melodies on the erhu (Chinese two-string fiddle) and the yangchin (Chinese hammered dulcimer). Kurt will discuss the history of Chinese music and its place in ancient Chinese society. He will also discuss the different instruments and how they compared to their Western counterparts at 12:00 pm and 2:00 pm.
Approximately one billion people speak some form of Chinese as their first language. All visitors are encouraged to try learning basic Chinese vocabulary and pronunciation at a 12:30 pm workshop led by members from Penn's Chinese Language Program.
Beginning at 1:00 pm, guests can watch the slow, fluid techniques of Yang Tai Chi, the explosively powerful movements of Chen Tai Chi, and demonstrations of various weapons and forms used in traditional Chinese martial arts, as presented by Sifu John Chen of the Ba'z Tai Chi and Kung Fu Studio.
The Penn Museum has one of the finest collections of Chinese and Buddhist art in the United States. In the Chinese Rotunda at 1:00 pm, Dr. Xiuqin Zhou, Penn Museum's Senior Registrar, offers a gallery talk about the history of Tang horses, drawing from her visit to the excavation site of Zhaoling—the mausoleum of Emperor Taizong—in the Shaanxi province of China. Guests can also examine stone reliefs from the Zhaoling site that depict two of the Tang Dynasty Emperor's favorite horses, Curly and Autumn Dew.
Performers from the Huaxia Chinese School at Great Valley Culture Bridge Dance Troupe take the stage at 1:30 pm to present a Sword Lily dance explaining the Sword Lily's symbolism of elegance and strength. Wearing costumes unique to Sword dance, the troupe performs with their swords to symbolize yin and yang, heaven and earth, and pierce the sky not destructively, but as an expression of spirit.
At 2:00 pm, Chinese calligrapher and artist Onlei Annie Jung returns for the afternoon to explain the tangram, an ancient Chinese puzzle game believed to have been invented in China during the Song Dynasty, and introduced in Europe in the early 19th century.
PennYo, the University of Pennsylvania's premier Chinese a cappella group, serenades the crowd at 2:30 pm. Having just returned from their third international tour, the ensemble seeks to popularize Chinese music through the medium of a cappella performance.
At 3:00 pm, guests can join Falun Gong practitioners from the Greater Philadelphia Falun Dafa Association for sets of gentle and relaxing exercises based on the universal principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance.
Members of Cheung's Hung Gar Kung Fu Academy offer a dynamic, Shaolin-style Kung Fu demonstration at 3:15 pm. Then, at 3:45 pm, visitors are treated to the spectacular Grand Finale Lion Dance. Dancers and drummers from Cheung's Academy wind their way through the crowd, closing the Museum's traditional New Year festivities with sharp footwork and pulsating drums to chase away evil and usher in good luck for the year.
A Chinese Art Marketplace provides plenty of activities for children and families. From 11:00 am to 3:30 pm, visitors can enjoy demonstrations by local painters and artists, including Chinese calligraphy and paper cutting. Families can also create a Year of the Horse craft and learn more about Chinese New Year traditions, the growing trend of Spring Festival among younger generations, the legend of the Chinese zodiac, and see the artistic achievements of the Chinese with artifacts including silk paintings, jade and coral figurines, bronze vessels, stone sculptures, and glazed pottery. Guests can also view the Museum's distinctive 19th-century crystal ball—believed to be from the imperial collection of Qing dynasty Dowager Empress Cixi (1835–1908).
Both the Museum Shop and the Pyramid Shop for Children offer "Go," an ancient game of Oriental strategy as well as special Chinese arts, crafts and books. The Pepper Mill Café features Chinese lunch entrées and kid-friendly foods.
CHINESE NEW YEAR CELEBRATION 2014 SCHEDULE
11:00 am - 12:30 pm – Calligraphy Drop-in Workshop
11:30 am - 12:15 pm – MeiMei Dance Performance & Pennsylvania Chinese Dance Club Performance
12:00 - 12:30 pm– East vs. West Chinese Music Demonstration
12:30 - 2:00 pm – Language Class
1:00 - 1:30 pm – Ba'z Tai Chi Demo & Workshop
1:00 - 2:30 pm – Gallery Talk: Tang Horses
2:00 - 2:30 pm – East vs. West Chinese Music Demonstration
2:00 - 3:30 pm – Tangram Workshop
2:30 - 3:00 pm – PennYo A Cappella Performance
3:00 - 3:30 pm – Falun Gong Demonstration
3:15 - 4:00 pm – Kung Fu Demonstration and Lion Dance Finale
All Day Events, 11:00 am - 3:30 pm
In the Chinese Rotunda
Year of the Horse Craft
Pepper Mill Café
Special Chinese New Year Café Menu
The Penn Museum (the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology) is dedicated to the study and understanding of human history and diversity. Founded in 1887, the Museum has sent more than 300 archaeological and anthropological expeditions to all the inhabited continents of the world. With an active exhibition schedule and educational programming for children and adults, the Museum offers the public an opportunity to share in the ongoing discovery of humankind's collective heritage.
The Penn Museum is located at 3260 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (on Penn's campus, across from Franklin Field). Public transportation to the Museum is available via SEPTA's Regional Rail Line at University City Station; the Market-Frankford Subway Line at 34th Street Station; trolley routes 11, 13, 34, and 36; and bus routes 21, 30, 40, and 42. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and first Wednesdays of each month until 8:00 pm. Closed Mondays and holidays. Admission donation is $15 for adults; $13 for senior citizens (65 and above); $10 for children (6-17) and full-time students with ID; free to Members, PennCard holders, active U.S. Military, and children 5 and younger.
Hot and cold meals and light refreshments are offered to visitors with or without Museum admission in The Pepper Mill Café; the Museum Shop and Pyramid Shop for Children offer a wide selection of gifts, books, games, clothing and jewelry. Penn Museum can be found on the web at www.penn.museum. For general information call 215.898.4000. For group tour information call 215.746.8183.
Image captions (top to bottom): Penn Museum's 33rd annual Chinese New Year Celebration, on Saturday, January 25 from 11 am to 4 pm, concludes with the lion dance grand finale performed by Cheng Hung Gar Kung Fu Academy. (Photo: Penn Museum). The University of Pennsylvania Chinese Dance Club will perform an array of Yange Fan, Dai, Miao, and classical styles of dance during the Penn Museum's 33rd annual Chinese New Year Celebration, on Saturday, January 25, from 11 am to 4 pm. (Photo: Liqiong Chen, University of Pennsylvania Chinese Dance Club). Steven Arbitman, a student of Sifu John Chen at the Ba'z Tai Chi and Kung Fu Studio, models the tai chi form known as Monkey Retreats, or Repulse Monkey, in preparation for the Penn Museum's 33rd annual Chinese New Year Celebration, on Saturday, January 25 from 11 am to 4 pm. (Photo: Wu Tan Dao, Inc., Ba'z Tai Chi and Kung Fu Studio). Visitors can see this stone relief depicting Autumn Dew, one of Emperor Taizong's favorite horses, in the Rotunda of the Penn Museum's China gallery during the 33rd annual Chinese New Year Celebration on Saturday, January 25 from 11 am to 4 pm. (Object C395. Photo: Penn Museum). Penn Museum's Chinese New Year Celebration includes a Shaolin-style Kung Fu demonstration by students from Cheng Hung Gar Kung Fu Academy on Saturday, January 25 from 11 am to 4 pm. (Photo: Penn Museum). Young dancers from the MeiMei Dance Troupe interpret legendary Chinese folk tales through movement as part of the Penn Museum's annual Chinese New Year Celebration slated for Saturday, January 25, from 11 am to 4 pm. (Photo: Penn Museum).