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Lunar New Year

Saturday, January 21, 2023 |
10:00 AM – 4:00 PM ET

A group of children performing a dance with lanterns.


Penn Museum

Event Type


The Penn Museum is thrilled to present our annual Lunar New Year celebration, in partnership with the American Chinese Museum! Many communities recognize Lunar New Year, including those who identify with Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, and Tibetan cultures. The holiday traditionally begins with the first new moon of the lunar calendar, and ends 15 days later on the first full moon. This festive holiday originated as a time to rest from farm work and be with loved ones. The diverse customs of Lunar New Year include feasting, exchanging gifts, lighting exquisite lanterns, and making offerings to gods and ancestors.

Visitors can celebrate the Year of the Rabbit by enjoying the traditional Lion Dance, performed by Penn Lions, the University of Pennsylvania’s premier Chinese Lion Dance troupe, as well as other traditional and contemporary music and dance performances. This celebration is perfect for all ages, with storytelling and make-and-take activities throughout the day.


  Activity Description Location
10:30-11:00 am Little Mulan Dance Troupe A traditional Chinese dance class from the Great Wall Chinese School. Harrison Auditorium
11:30-11:45 am Double row keyboard performance This special instrument combines the harpsichord's ability to double its keyboard with the sound of a modern Steinway piano. Egypt Gallery
11:45 am-12:00 pm Storytelling Our friends from the American Chinese Museum will read stories about Lunar New Year. Sphinx Gallery
12:00-12:20 pm Chinese Choir Music Members of the American Chinese Museum present two traditional choir songs. Harrison Auditorium
12:30-12:45 pm Chinese Zither and Erhu performance The Chinese zither was the most popular instrument in China in ancient and medieval times, and is often played together with the erhu. The erhu is a two-string, violin-like instrument that is played with a bow. Egypt Gallery
1:00-1:30 pm Traditional and contemporary dance and vocal performances This performance will blend traditional Chinese dance with more modern street dance. Following the dancing, there will be a vocal performance by a member of the American Chinese Museum. Harrison Auditorium
2:30-3:15 pm Philadelphia Chinese Opera Society The Philadelphia Chinese Opera Society (PCOS) was established in February 1999 as a non-profit organization with a mission to promote and preserve the cultural heritage of the Chinese community in the form of Chinese opera, through educational activities and touring engagements. Harrison Auditorium
3:15-3:45 pm Storytelling Our friends from the American Chinese Museum will read stories about the Lunar New Year. Sphinx Gallery
3:45-4:15 pm Lion Dance Finale with Penn Lions The University of Pennsylvania’s Premier Traditional Chinese Lion Dance Troupe Harrison Auditorium
10 am-4 pm Marketplace + Make and Take Activities Shop and make art: traditional papercutting; zodiac animal coloring sheets; Year of the Rabbit crafts; and Lunar New Year lanterns Asia Galleries

Included with Museum Admission

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