Han Chiang Stadium
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Chinese Lion Dance on Stilts
You can witness many feats of amazing prowess in Penang, Malaysia. Besides the flag catching contests that happen around New Years you can occasionally catch a Lion-Dance-on-Stilts performance. And how much better if it's an international competition drawing on teams from wherever mainland & overseas Chinese are found! You might anticipate that these competitors will walk on wooden stilts that they carry along. Not so! Rather, after donning their bulky lion suits, a pair of experts mount on top metal poles that have a small horizontal step on top--about 6 inches in diameter. These stilts are of different lengths & so the steps are at different heights. Yet, while wearing these ridiculously cumbersome costumes the dancers prance from stilt to stilt, sometimes leaning precariously over in gravity defying stunts & swinging their partner around. It's not something you should try at home. This year one young man fell, but was fortunate to miss the stilts poling up all around him. Within seconds he was back up on the stilts slipping back into his costume & dancing on as if nothing had happened. When in Penang don't just eat Asia's best selection of food--get out & see these amazing cultural performances as well.
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