Asia Society Texas Welcomes the Year of the Rabbit With Record-Breaking Lunar New Year Festival
HOUSTON, January 31, 2023 — A record 4,000 guests welcomed the Lunar New Year at Asia Society Texas' annual festival, celebrating the Year of the Rabbit and the Cat with all-ages activities, performances, food, and storytimes inspired by traditions across Asia.
Attendees created rabbit hats and lanterns with Huaxing Arts Group, made flip books with Brave Little Company, and contributed to a community art scroll with the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Expanded storytimes included bilingual presentations by Houston Public Library–Kendall and storybook opera with Houston Grand Opera, while attendees learned about different traditional Chinese instruments through demonstrations and enjoyed music and dance on our stage, both presented by Huaxing Arts Group. Outdoors on our festival lawn, Houston Shaolin Kung Fu Academy performed lively lion dances and a dragon dance for an energetic crowd. New this year, Dr. Kathleen Funk of Acufunkture presented qigong demonstrations sponsored by lululemon.
For the fifth year, Asia Society Texas hosted a Lunar New Year art contest, with 900 students participating in workshops led by a teaching artist throughout January and the winning art displayed at the festival. Participating schools included Kolter Elementary, Garden Oaks Montessori Magnet, Longfellow Elementary School, The School at St. George Place, Mandarin Immersion Magnet School, Ed White Elementary, and Lanier Middle School.
Visitors also enjoyed a free sneak preview of the new exhibition Summoning Memories: Art Beyond Chinese Traditions, which opens to the public on February 10, as well as an expanded menu of festival fare by local vendors Burmalicious by Suu, The Custard Box, Dumpling Haus, Fat Funk, Green Roots, Karuna's Kitchen, Magic Cup, Mama Marie's Filipino Soul Food, Popssibilities, and Teacup Cafe.
The festivities continued Sunday with arts and crafts and performances at The Galleria, where performing groups included Huaxing Arts Group, WonderBox, and Shaolin Kung Fu Academy. The celebration resumes this weekend, February 4–5, with additional performances at The Galleria by Three Roses, Han Narea, Dance of Asian America, and Filipino Young Professionals.
Lunar New Year 2023 at Asia Society Texas was made possible with generous support from Kenny and Janae Tsai, lululemon, China General Chamber of Commerce, and Huaxing Arts Group.
Asia Society Texas' education department started the celebrations early on Saturday, January 14, joining Houston Public Library's event at the Central Library, and continues the fun with outreach at Ed White Elementary on Friday, February 3, funded by the Arts Connect Houston Arts Action Fund.
About Lunar New Year at Asia Society Texas
Featuring music and dance performances as well as zodiac-inspired activities, our annual festival celebrates Lunar New Year traditions from across Asia. Free and open to the public, the all-ages event is one of Asia Society Texas' most popular programs, drawing roughly 2,000 guests each year.
Previous Lunar New Year Festivals
About Asia Society Texas
Asia Society Texas believes in the strength and beauty of diverse perspectives and people. As an educational institution, we advance cultural exchange by celebrating the vibrant diversity of Asia, inspiring empathy, and fostering a better understanding of our interconnected world. Spanning the fields of arts, business, culture, education, and policy, our programming is rooted in the educational and cultural development of our community — trusting in the power of art, dialogue, and ideas to combat bias and build a more inclusive society.