The lion dance is usually performed during the Chinese New Year and other Chinese traditional, cultural and religious festivals. It may also be performed at important occasions such as business opening events, special celebrations or wedding ceremonies, or may be used to honour special guests by the Chinese communities. The Chinese lion dance is normally operated by two dancers, one of whom manipulates the head while the other forms the rear end of the lion. It is distinguishable from the dragon dance which is performed by many people who hold the long sinuous body of the dragon on poles. Chinese lion dance fundamental movements can be found in Chinese martial arts , and it is commonly performed to a vigorous drum beat. Both forms are commonly found in China, but around the world especially in South East Asia, the Southern Lion predominates as it was spread by the Chinese diaspora communities who are historically mostly of Southern Chinese origin.
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Like the lion dance , it is most often seen in festive celebrations. The dance is performed by a team of experienced dancers who manipulate a long flexible figure of a dragon using poles positioned at regular intervals along the length of the dragon. The dance team simulates the imagined movements of this river spirit in a sinuous, undulating manner. The dragon dance is often performed during Chinese New Year. Chinese dragons are a symbol of China's culture, and they are believed to bring good luck to people, therefore the longer the dragon is in the dance, the more luck it will bring to the community. The appearance of a dragon is both fearsome and bold but it has a benevolent disposition, and it was an emblem to represent imperial authority.
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