Lion dance has been a part of my life for the last decade. I started lion dancing at the age of 14 because I sparked a great interest in stepping out of my comfort zone and trying something new. When I joined the team at the age of 14, I had no idea what to expect or know how far it would take me. I was lucky enough to be partnered with my best friend whom I met on the team; to this day I would never trust anyone to throw me up in the air besides him. Starting with the foundation of Horse Stance, which at the time was the hardest and most painful thing to learn and practice, I began to learn new techniques, tricks, and routines that were much more painful than that horse stance. As a group of equally passionate lion dancers, we explored and found new knowledge and styles of lion dancing as well as the culture and history behind it.
I have been controlling the head of the Lion since I was 14, a position that requires me to manipulate life-like movements of the lion and having the mindset of what it is like to be a lion/cat and bring forth as much of the animal's soul and energy under this bambo-made costume as possible. Our team now is heavily focused on Contemporary Hok-San style, which focuses a lot on telling a story and passing a message to the audience. We make it a goal for the audience to attempt to follow along with what we are doing, how we are dancing, and what we are trying to accomplish. As my love for lion dance grew, my love for my team grow as well. We have been through many obstacles that made us stronger both as a team and as individuals. Lion dancing brought us together as a group of people that has now become close friends. As I get older, Lion Dancing is more than just a hobby to me. Lion dance is something that I can do to retain our culture, our tradition, and express how I feel.