The Chinese New Year of 2020 falls on Saturday 25 January, which kicks off more than a week of festivities. According to the Chinese zodiac, 2020 is the Year of the Rat, which symbolises prosperity, vitality, optimism, energy and intelligence, and it’s predicted to be a lucky year.
There are plenty of ways for visitors and residents to Nottingham to learn more about Chinese culture and join in the colourful and vibrant festivities planned so read on to see our top picks for 2020.
The Chinese New Year Celebrations at Old Market Square is a free event which takes place on Saturday 18 January from 11 am – 5 pm, designed to help local citizens and visitors to better understand Chinese culture and enrich city life. This event will showcase Chinese culture through a variety of activities and performances (singing, dancing, face changing, music instrument playing, calligraphy, paper cutting, storytelling and dragon dance) and the chance to try some authentic Chinese cuisine.
The Nottingham Chinese New Year Gala 2020 at Lakeside Arts takes place from Thursday 6 – Saturday 8 February (various times) at the Djanogly Theatre. This sweeping array of entertainment ranging from enchanting Chinese Erhu, Guzheng and Bamboo Flute music, to edge-of-your-seat group Kung Fu routines, will weave together a beautiful tapestry of the contemporary and traditional. Share the boundless energy of the Rat with Lakeside; the perfect way to begin the year. Tickets £10 per person (or £8 before 26 Jan).
Lakeside Arts are also hosting Chinese New Year Drop in Arts and Crafts on Sunday 26 January 2020 from 12pm – 3pm, which takes place at the Performing Arts Centre. This free event offers a fabulous opportunity to try out different Chinese arts and crafts including paper cutting, Chinese knots, calligraphy and more.
Another wonderful event at Lakeside Arts is a fascinating exhibition showcasing work by leading Chinese artists working in the 21st century: Contemporary Chinese Art From the Priseman Seabrook Collection. Established by British artist Robert Priseman and his wife Ally Seabrook in 2014, this selection of small contemporary handmade works on paper includes works with ink, watercolour, charcoal, stitching and papercutting. The exhibition runs between Saturday 11 January and Sunday 16 February at Lakeside’s Wallner Gallery, so make sure you drop in and enjoy those captivating works of art.
On Monday 10 February you are invited to Overheard, an innovative performance in the Lakeside Arts cafe, which lets you eavesdrop with headphones on the actors seated at a table nearby. This funny and moving real-time live audio drama explores the concept of belonging and identity as the cast play out what it means to be British and Chinese at a time of political and cultural upheaval. For more information and to book tickets, please click here.