ALL SET FOR AN OX-PICIOUS START TO CHINESE NEW YEAR
By ANN TAN
GEORGE TOWN: Instead of the traditional lion and dragon dances for Chinese New Year, two bulls will dance to usher in the Year of the Ox here.
The bull dance became a reality, thanks to an Ipoh craftsman who created the gold and silver bulls, complete with hooves and tails.
Teh Wing Liang, who has been making lion and dragon heads for the past 15 years, said he received the order to create the bulls from the Kepala Batas Tiong Hua Sports and Cultural Association.
“Since we have never seen the bull dance in Malaysia, I had to browse through the Internet for inspiration,” he said.
The 34-year-old craftsman took a week to complete the heads. Wing Liang said the jaw was the most difficult part to create.
He said he consulted a cowherd who told him that cows kept their eyes open even when they were asleep.
“That is why I did not put any eyelids on the two bull heads unlike the traditional lion heads,” he said, adding that the heads were 20% smaller than a lion’s head.
“I have to make sure the dancers can move comfortably with the bull’s head on,” he said. Having formed a bamboo ‘skeleton’ of the head, Teh used cloth for the hide, a pair of shoes for the hooves and a hose for the tail.
Guang Ming Daily senior business promotion manager Teh Eng Beng said the gold and silver bulls will perform during the Penang Chinese New Year Miao Hui celebration on Jan 17. The dances will be performed in front of the Guang Ming Daily office in Jalan Macalister at 8pm.
“We invited the Kepala Batas Tiong Hua Sports and Cultural Association to do the bull dance for the Year of the Ox. The event is jointly organised with Sin Chew Daily,” he said.
Eng Beng said association members referred to the Internet to see how the dance was performed.
“The bull dance tends to be slower and more humorous than the lion dance,” he said.