NEWARK – The Newark Museum will honor one of the most popular East Asian traditions, the Harvest Moon Celebration, on Saturday, Oct. 3, from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. with family activities and performances held throughout the day.
For more than 3,000 years, when the moon shines the brightest (early October) the crops are harvested, East Asian countries including China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam and others celebrate the Autumn Moon Festival holiday and honor the Moon Goddess, Chang’e. According to East Asian legend, Chang’e lives on the moon. Her pet, Jade Rabbit, can be seen on the moon, similar to Western culture’s man in the moon.
During the museum’s Harvest Moon Celebration, visitors will delight in eating moon cakes while sipping ginger tea and enjoy the various performances and hands-on activities presented throughout the day including creating a Chinese lantern to hang underneath the harvest moon, designing shadow puppets and constructing an origami rabbit or cricket.
Other activities include Moon Madness, where visitors can learn about the phases of the moon from the museum’s astronomer. A self-guided scavenger hunt conducted throughout the museum’s galleries invites children to find clues and win prizes.
Other family activities scheduled for Harvest Moon Family Day include:
Storytelling and Traditional Paper-cutting Workshops at 1:30, 2:30 and 3:30 p.m.
Children’s book author and illustrator, Huy Voun Lee will present a storytelling workshop using the traditional art of paper-cutting to bring to life the ancient proverb of the Carp Leaping Over the Dragon’s Gate. Families are invited to create their own paper cuts of carp or dragons.
Classical Performance by Music From China at 1:30 p.m.
Music From China – Four string musicians perform Chinese classical and folk music on a variety of instruments including 2-string fiddles, a moon guitar and hammered dulcimer. Musicians Wang Guowei, Sun Li, Wang Junling and Susan Cheng will perform masterpieces from the traditional repertoire consisting of classical compositions and regional folk music with an array of stylistic variations.
Folk music selections span China’s broad landscape, from the urban sophistication of Shanghai and Guangdong (Canton) to the open grasslands of the Mongolian steppes and rural villages of northern China. The group is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Its members perform on traditional instruments such as erhu, pipa, zheng, yangqin, ruan, and dizi to invoke the sonorities of age-old musical traditions and interpret the music of today.
Princeton Korean Dance Troupe Performance at 3:15 p.m.
The Princeton Korean Dance Troupe is made up of young performers, ages 13 to 17, who are students of Kiran Paek. The program features the Crown Dance, Small Drum Dance, Hour Glass Drum Band, Sword Dance, Hour Glass Drum Dance, Samulnori and Fan Dance. Small Drum Dance, Hour Glass Drum Dance, Samulnori are traditionally performed by farmers during Harvest Moon Festival.
The Princeton Korean Dance Troupe was established in 1994 by Kiran Paek with the mission of promoting in the community an awareness of the beauty of traditional Korean dances and heritage, teaching the members traditional Korean dances and rhythms and helping the members establish sense of identity and pride as Koreans through performances and services to the community.
Paek received a master of fine arts in modern dance from New York University Tisch School for the Arts and a bachelor of fine arts and education in dance from Sejong University in Seoul, Korea. She began studying Korean dance when she was four years old and was a member of the renowned performing school “Little Angels,” now known as Sunwha Arts School. She was a member of Chun Myoung Sook Korean Dance Company of New York City for four years and taught Korean Dance at New York YMCA for three years before moving to Princeton area.
Throughout The Day, Tour From Meiji to Modern: Japanese Art Goes Global, 19th to 21st Centuries
As part of its eventful year-long Centennial celebration, the Newark Museum presents its newly re-conceived Japanese Galleries with the exhibition From Meiji to Modern: Japanese Art Goes Global, 19th to 21st Centuries. This new installation showcases a dazzling array of Japanese art drawn from the Museum’s own renowned permanent collection of the arts of Asia, a collection now consisting of more than 30,000 objects.
From Meiji to Modern coincides with the debut of a new collections group at the Newark Museum: Friends of Asian Art. It is one of four such groups that help support the preservation and growth of a specific collection. Museum Friends learn about a collection through hands-on workshops, curator lectures and visits to other related museums, galleries and private collections.
In addition to Friends of Asian Art, the Newark Museum has Friends of African Art, American Art and the Decorative Arts. For more information about the Friends program, including events and fees, call 1-973-596-6337.
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