HAVANA, Feb. 15 (Xinhua) -- A colorful cultural show was held here Thursday in the Cuban capital's Chinatown to celebrate the Lunar New Year, a festivity that has already become a tradition in local Chinese communities.
Hundreds of locals watched performances of a traditional Chinese lion dance, drum show, wushu (martial arts) and qigong (a kind of gentle exercise composed of repeated movements to stretch the body and increase fluid movement).
Among the audience were naturalized Chinese and their descendants, as well as Cubans, who gathered to celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Dog in the Chinese zodiac.
The celebration was organized by the institutions in the capital's Chinatown.
"All the institutions in the Chinatown have made joint efforts for the show, in hopes to promote our culture and traditions with the Cuban people. The Spring Festival is beyond doubt the most important of Chinese cultural symbols," Roberto Vargas Lee, director of the Cuban Wushu School, told Xinhua.
Music groups from the Havana House of Chinese Arts and Traditions and staff from the local Confucius Institute -- the main Chinese organizations in the city's Chinatown -- also attended the event.
"We are protecting Chinese traditions by sharing them with people. When we celebrate our grand festival, the Cuban people will also learn our customs of Chinese New Year," said Vargas Lee.
The show follows the intense cultural activities of the 27th Havana International Book Fair with China as the guest nation, which ended on Sunday.
"The performance is the preamble of the Lunar New Year that officially begins tomorrow and without doubt these cultural activities promoted the Cuban people's appreciation of the Chinese culture and traditions," Guillermo Chui, a local Chinese, told Xinhua.
Other New Year's activities are scheduled for the next days, including book exhibitions, lectures on Chinese culture, and Chinese language and calligraphy show-and-tells, among others.