In Chinese culture, the genre of folk music is prevalent and dates back to the Han Dynasty. One folk dance that is popular even today is the Chinese Dragon Dance. Initially used in a ceremony to worship ancestors and pray for rain, this dance today symbolizes “wisdom, power and wealth, and … are believed to bring good luck to people.” Typically, the music that goes along with this dance consists of “music of beating drums, clashing cymbals, and resounding gongs.” Several dancers carry poles which are attached to a huge, decorative dragon. They dance and “puppet” the dragon to make it move as if it were a real creature. This dance is performed usually during Chinese New Year or at Lantern Festivals. Today, this performance still goes on and can be seen in many Chinatowns around the states.
I personally don’t feel tied to this folk genre or Dragon Dance because I don’t believe in the meaning behind it. Nevertheless, this type of music and dance is still very tied to my ethnicity and is enjoyed by many people from other cultures during the Chinese holidays. The video below shows the Lion Dance performed with the drum and gong in New York City Chinatown where many bystanders were able to witness.