Set to drum up a storm

SJK (C) Wen Khai added a creative touch to their 24-Season Drums performance by arranging the drums to form ‘long’ — the simplified Chinese character for the dragon.

Wen Khai in Batu Maung is the first Chinese primary school in Penang to set up a 24-Festival Drums troupe.

Despite the hot weather, the members were seen practising diligently in a field for the school’s Chinese New Year celebration to be held on Jan 30.

The drum performance, with a Chinese cultural dance, looks set to be a hit.

Drum instructor Quah Beng Chye, 30, said the group was established in 1997 with pupils aged between eight and 12 from various races.

“The kids have experience performing at various occasions such as state-level Chinese New Year celebration and temple events,” he said on Monday.

He added that the troupe had won several competitions in the past few years.

Quah added that the drums were based on the 24 festivals in the lunar calendar.

“Each drum represents one festival and the full troupe will complete the cycle of 24 festivals in the calendar,” he said.

Year Six pupil Chan Ee Xuan, 12, who has been with the troupe for four years, said the Chinese New Year performance was something that he looked forward to.

“I like the way we can create a festive mood by showcasing our skills,” said Chan.

He is one of the nine dragon kids in the troupe.

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