Drumming to the beat of Chinese culture

Chai Puan (left) showing Liow (second from left) around the newly-opened museum.

The first 24 Festive Drums Museum here has opened its doors to the public.

Johor tourism, women, family and community development committee chairman Liow Cai Tung said besides being an attraction to visitors, the museum would help create awareness of Chinese culture.

“The history and information on the 24 Festive Drums will be displayed at this museum for visitors to see and understand.

“Although this performance art is identified as a Chinese-Malaysian cultural heritage, people from all races have taken part in 24 Festive Drums and is testament of its ability to strengthen unity, ” she said at the opening ceremony of the museum.

Liow said the opening of the museum was timely for Visit Johor 2020.

“I believe the museum will draw even more tourists to the state, ” she said.

Museum honorary president Tan Chai Puan said the 24 Festive Drums had come a long way from its humble beginnings years ago.

“When we started this performance art about 30 years ago in Johor Baru, no one imagined we would go international.

“Today, our 24 Festive Drums troupe has performed all over the world and grown bigger and more energetic over time, ” he said.

Chai Puan said the museum was a tribute to Johor Baru which he claimed was the birthplace of 24 Festive Drums.

Founded 32 years ago on June 12,1988 by Chai Puan and the late Tan Hooi Song, 24 Festive Drums changed the traditional art of drumming in Chinese culture.

Inspired by the solo drum used in the rhythmic lion dance and 24 solar terms used in traditional agricultural calendar, the two Tans created a new form of percussion art and performance that has since been widely practised and recognised in several countries.

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