Origin of the Lion Dance

There are many different stories that explain how and when the lion dance was originated. One of the most popular stories dates back to the Tang Dynasty (618-906 AD). The story begins with the emperor having a very strange dream one night. A mystical creature had come and saved the emperorís life in this dream. The emperor awakened and wondered what this mystical creature was. He immediately summoned all of his ministers together and described in detail his dream. One of his ministers then explained to the emperor that the mystical creature he had described sounded like that of a creature from the west called the lion. Since this lion had saved the emperorís life in the dream, the lion became a symbol of good luck, prosperity, and happiness.


The Traditional Chinese Lion Dance symbolizes happiness, good fortune, and prosperity. The Lion Dance is performed throughout the world to bring forth these positive elements as well as to ward off any evil spirits. The Lion Dance is typically performed at events that typically symbolize a type of beginning or inception to ensure that these elements will be present throughout the entire time. The following list are just some of the special occasions you will see a performance of the Chinese Lion Dance.


The lion symbolizes happiness and good fortune for the beginning of a long marriage. The lion dance will bring happiness and entertainment to the families and friends. The honored couple and/or guests will feed the lion with fresh green lettuce, golden bright oranges, and gold in a red envelope, which would then bless the wedding with luck and prosperity.

New Yearís Celebrations

Throughout Chinese tradition, Chinese New Yearís is celebrated with lion dances and dragon dances that symbolize good fortune and long life, and prosperity for the year. The lion dance may be performed at a restaurant, a banquet hall, or at a street celebration. The lion is being use to ward off evil spirits and welcome the New Year with a bang.


The lion will ward off evil spirits and bad fortune. The lion will bring the birthday person good fortune, good health, long life, and prosperity. The lion serves as the protector for the lucky birthday person.

Grand Openings

Many new owners of businesses request for a lion dance to be performed to ward off any bad spirits at the location and welcome the good spirits. It is also use to protect against evil spirits from harming the business. This is why many business owners tend offer the largest lettuce, the biggest oranges, and the biggest red envelope to the lion for a bigger return.