On the heels of the wildly successful Red Envelope Show featuring artists’ tributes to the Year of the Pig, Flushing Town Hall unveils a host of visual and performing arts programming— including the return of the wildly popular Chinese New Year Temple Bazaar—to celebrate the Lunar New Year throughout February and March.
On the horizon to celebrate the Year of the Pig are: Tradition Meets Modern Beauty: Wonju Seo’s Contemporary Interpretation of Korean Pojagi on February 1; Flour Dough Sculpture-Making on February 3; Korean Paper Pojagi Workshop on February 9; Sleeping Beauty by David Gonzalez on February 16; the annual Chinese New Year Temple Bazaar on February 17; and, Noreum Machi on March 1.
“Lunar New Year celebrations are a highlight at Flushing Town Hall every year, and this season is no exception,” says Flushing Town Hall Executive and Artistic Director, Ellen Kodadek. “Our spectacular lineup of Lunar New Year visual and performing arts programming reflects our mission to bring global arts to our global community.”
Tradition Meets Modern Beauty: Wonju Seo’s Contemporary Interpretation of Korean Pojagi opens on February 1 at 5:30 PM and features dynamic geometric abstract textile art, which expresses the artist’s contemporary inspiration from the ancient art of Pojagi, traditional Korean patchwork wrapping cloths. Traditional uses of Pojagi were to wrap, store, and transport items; after the 20th century, it became a Korean cultural icon and was adapted as a unique textile art. Award-winning artist Wonju Seo visualizes the process of redefining her personal and cultural identities through her artwork. Additionally, she will lead a workshop at 2 PM on February 9, Make Korean Paper Pojagi, where participants will learn how to make a single layer paper Pojagi using five colors.
Flour Dough Sculpture-Making workshops by Xun Ye take place on February 3 at 1 PM and 3 PM. Flour dough modeling is a traditional Chinese handicraft that has continued to develop for over 700 years. During the Sung Dynasty, ornamental dough patterns decorated feast dishes and also would be used as offerings for holidays and ceremonies. In this workshop, participants will learn basic sculpture techniques and create playful sculptures of animals and flowers.
On February 16 at 2:15 PM, Flushing Town Hall presents the family performance Sleeping Beauty by David Gonzalez. This one-man show, which includes Chinese subtitles, is a rhymed verse spin on the classic fairy tale with live music and image projections that create a magical, multi-media world. Gonzalez will also lead a workshop prior to the show.
February also brings the return of the fifth annual Chinese New Year Temple Bazaar. The event, which illustrates Flushing Town Hall’s mission to present multi-disciplinary global arts that engage and educate the global communities in New York, celebrates one of the most significant traditional holidays in Chinese culture with the Chinese American community during the Lunar New Year.
This year’s Bazaar, which takes place on February 17 at 11 AM and 2 PM, includes performances for all ages, art making, lantern making, flower decoration, and food to celebrate the Year of the Pig. The events feature several jugglers’ acts —plate spinning, Chinese yo-yo dance, foot handkerchief—Chinese folk dances, Sichuan style facing-changing, hand puppets, and Chinese music in partnership with outstanding performing arts groups and artists, such as New York Chinese Cultural Center, Chinese Theatre Works, RuDance Center, Master Xidi Yang, and Master Naiyi Zhao.
In addition, paper-cutting artist Ming-Liang Lu presents traditional folk art demonstrations and a sugar-painting artist shows their traditional work. Attendees also can add newly designed red envelopes to the community submissions that remain in the venue’s hallways after January’s popular Red Envelope Show closed.
The Temple Bazaar kicks off with a New Year’s dragon parade at 9:30 AM, starting in front of the Flushing Queens Library, continuing along Main Street, and making a turn on Northern Boulevard to Flushing Town Hall. The Temple Bazaar is offered in two sessions, with tickets for each time slot.
Finally, the global arts venue presents Noreum Machi on March 1 at 8 PM. The name refers to a performer who is so skilled that no one would dare to follow on stage. Noreum Machi specializes in the virtuosic percussion music known as Samul-nori and is the most widely recognized traditional music band in Korea. Founded in 1993, the group brings together traditional singing and powerful percussion in their musical and creative activities.
Flushing Town Hall encourages attendees to purchase tickets for the Chinese Temple Bazaar early, before they sell out. For tickets and more information about all Lunar New Year programs, visit www.flushingtownhall.org or call (718) 463-7700 x222.
Flushing Town Hall is accessible by car, bus, train and foot – located a short distance from the 7 train – at 137-35 Northern Blvd., in Flushing, Queens. Access for wheelchair users and individuals with limited mobility is available.
Once again, Flushing Town Hall is opening its doors to teenagers – for free. Under the “Teen Access Program,” all 13- to 19-year-old teens (whether a member or not) will be welcomed to attend any performance for free. The program is designed to appeal to students and help foster a greater love for arts and culture.