The Chinese Culture Connection hosted their annual Lunar New Year Celebration. The show was on January 18th, 2020, in the Jenkins Auditorium. Many performers came into Malden High School as they perform acts from lion dance to dance groups.
The Chinese Culture Club worked with Mei Hung, the executive director of the Chinese Culture Connection, to plan the event and make sure the show runs smoothly. The Chinese Culture Club began communicating with Hung to start the planning process in November. Hung would visit about once a month after school to meet with the club and plan in person but a majority of the planning done by the club was during after school hours among the club officers.
Latin teacher and Asian Culture Club advisor Julie Fox explained how the planning process was “crazy, since the event is so big,” but overall finds it “worth it.” She expressed how helpful it was that many of the officers have done this event in past years and added that “the officers have been so great about organizing everything.”
While the Chinese Culture Connection organized and planned the show itself, which acts were going to perform, what the order of the acts would be, and other performance related aspects, the Asian Culture Club managed more of the backstage tasks such as being prepared to set up chairs and microphones for upcoming acts.
Fox explained that most of the volunteers were part of either the YMCA Leaders Club, Key Club, or directly from the Asian Culture Club. She further expressed that the volunteers’ roles were essential prepare for acts, set up the stage for an act, finding performers before their acts, and making sure performers do not get lost on their way from the cafeteria to the auditorium. Fox believed that with the extra help this year it made it easier to ensure that they were prepared for the show.
Mayor Christenson attends the show every year hoping to improve his Mandarin skills from the past years. He values Malden’s diversity as he believes that “[Malden residents] are fortunate to live in a culturally-rich city where [they] can learn about each other’s heritage and share traditions.” Christenson sees culture-centered events as important because they are able to bring the Malden community together and “strengthen relationships and afford us the opportunity to learn about another culture.”
Christenson expressed that this year’s show struck him because of the “talent and skills of [the] students,” from hosting and organizing to performing on stage he added that “[the students] did a great job partnering up with the Chinese Cultural Connection.”