Plenty to crow about as Wellingtonians ring in the Year of the Rooster!

MEDIA RELEASE    I    1 February 2017

Wellingtonians will have much to look forward to as preparations for the city’s annual Chinese New Year celebrations crank up to mark the Year of the Rooster. While New Year in the West is celebrated for only one day, traditional Chinese New Year celebrations lasts two weeks.  The Year of the Rooster was welcomed in on 28 January 2017 and Asian Events Trust, will deliver their 16th Festival from 11-14 February, featuring a programme that will give all Wellingtonians plenty to crow about as they ring in the Year of the Rooster.

The Chinese New Year Festival is one of Wellington’s largest and most anticipated cultural events of the year attracting 60,000 plus people to events in the programme annually. It is the city’s first and foremost showcase of Chinese culture and celebrates the long-running contribution of the Chinese community to Wellington’s wellbeing, as well as instil a genuine interest in Chinese culture among the capital’s residents.

Linda Lim, Programme Director says; ‘The arts are a universal language that connects and brings communities together and through the forging of key partnerships we are able to put on an event that is uniquely Wellington while maintaining all the important elements of a traditional Chinese New Year celebration.’

Anticipated to be the largest festival to date, this year Asian Events Trust in partnership with the Wellington City Council and support from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China will host a group of artists consisting of professional performers from Chengdu, Sichuan province to headline the Festival programme. They will bring an array of traditional Chinese performing arts including the nationally guarded art of face-changing, acrobatics, tea pouring and folk dancing.

A collaboration between Wellington City Council, Asian Events Trust and the Wellington Phoenix Football Club sees the inclusion of a major international sporting initiative in the Festival programme. 2016 marked the first year of the Capital Cup, a football match between the Wellington Phoenix and the Beijing BG football teams as a new initiative to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the Wellington – Beijing sister city agreement. This event was attended by the Mayors of both cities and a reciprocal game, (now Huawei Sister Cities Cup) was set for 14 February 2017, following Chinese New Year festivities on the weekend of 11-12 February. The match will include a cultural showcase which will feature as part of the pre-match entertainment. This includes Dragon and Chinese folk dancers, tai chi and kapa haka performers and an Asian rock band to demonstrate the power of the arts to bridge the gap between sport and culture.

The East Meets West show on 11/12 February brings two cultures together through the universal language of performing arts.

‘We are thrilled to again partner with the Fringe Festival to be included in their programme. The East Meets West  show is a celebration of art in the cultural capital of NZ; an extravaganza bringing two cultures together through the universal language of performing arts. It features an eclectic mix of performances inspired by artists born in the Year of the Rooster by local groups alongside international performers from Chengdu China,’ says Lim.

A Festival Fireworks Display on Saturday night will be an explosion of sound and colour to ward off evil spirits and bring good luck and fortune for the coming year.

Festival Day on Sunday 12 February, will be a total experience of the finest Chinese cuisine, crafts and cultural entertainment.

Lim says;, ‘We are very proud of this programme  which will engage the wider community, and in doing so enrich them with Chinese heritage arts, culture and traditions. It will be a spectacular celebration to welcome in the Year of the Fire Rooster, one that gives us all plenty to crow about!’



Chinese New Year Festival, 11-14 February

East Meets West, 11/12 Feb –

Fireworks Display, 11 Feb, 9.30pm

Festival Day, 12 Feb

Huawei Sister Cities Cup (formerly Capital Cup) 14 Feb –

For details of the full Festival programme go to

Contact Linda Lim, Programme Director for more information or interviews – email or phone 027 4324269

Plenty to crow about as Wellingtonians ring in the Year of the Rooster

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