Lion dance or Unicorn dance is a form of traditional dance in which performers mimic a lion’s movements in a lion costume. The lion dance is usually performed during the Luna New Year and other traditional festivals, religious festivals or rituals. It may also be performed at important occasions such as business opening events, special celebrations or wedding ceremonies, or may be used to honour special guests. The Lion Dance is performed accompanied by the music of beating of drums, cymbals, and gongs.
Unicorn dance is the type of a rather special holy dance which has been handed down in Hoi An from the old days and left deep impressions in Hoi An people’s mind. The memory of many resident generations in Hoi An on the Mid – Autumn Festival will be faded step by step if there are no melodies “cac, tung, tung” of the unicorn dance, no sparkling lights of pyramidal or star – shaped lanterns and no procession of unicorns along the streets under the peaceful moonlight of the 8th lunar month.
In its developing process, the unicorn dance gradually becomes a typical folk dance in Hoi An with its own methods and techniques. It is on to drive evil spirits away, praying happiness, good crops, health and prosperity for the people.