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Molten iron to heat up Lantern Festival

By Yang Jun | chinadaily.com.cn| Updated: 2023-02-03 Print

A molten iron fireworks show in Taijiang county, Guizhou province — part of the annual Lantern Festival — has been performed by Miao ethnic people as a prayer for good weather, a good harvest and auspicious happiness.

Residents consider the show to be the most stunning activity in Guizhou. Every year after Spring Festival, local residents weave dragon lanterns, starting on the fifth day of the first lunar month.

Miao residents of Taijiang and tourists from around the country are looking forward to seeing a fire-wire dragon dance in celebration of Lantern Festival, thanks to optimized COVID-19 control measures.

Locals call the custom "the game of the brave" because both the performers and the audience are required to show no fear when tossing the hot iron.

Taijiang has maintained the ancient rules of the dragon dance ceremony. During the celebration, dancers perform with the lanterns in various worship ceremonies, then tour along the street.

Some business owners will prepare molten iron in doorways and toss it up to welcome the arrival of the dancing dragon. Dancing and sparkling fireworks make for a splendid night and push the activities to a climax.

Taijiang is a traditional home of the Miao community. It has absorbed Tunpu culture with Han ethnicity, as well showing a combination and collision between the Miao and Han cultures, forming a more distinctive and colorful cultural phenomenon.

The fire-wire dragon dance is typical, as it contains the cultural information of the original religious beliefs of human society in the past, and it's rich in historical and cultural values.

Wang Jin in Guiyang contributed to this story.

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