Calgary

Little kids, big stage: Calgary students perform Chinese New Year play at Jubilee

For students at Calgary's Highwood Elementary School, today is the biggest day of the year.

Mandarin students at Highwood School to perform in front of roughly 1,000 people

Students at Calgary's Highwood School prepare for their Chinese New Year performance at the Jubilee Auditorium. (Supplied by Dale Lee Kwong)

For students at Calgary's Highwood Elementary School, today is the biggest day of the year.

On Monday night, they'll perform a play about Chinese New Year in front of a packed house at the Jubilee Auditorium.

The school has been working with Quest Theatre to create a play that explores the Year of the Rooster, school principal Christine Cheung told the Calgary Eyeopener.

"We built our year around this one production," Cheung said.

Highwood — which has roughly 400 students from Kindergarten to Grade 4 — can no longer host the play at the school anymore, because they sell over 1,000 tickets, Cheung said.

"It's a very big deal that we have to do it at the Jubilee Auditorium."

Students of Highwood School's Chinese Mandarin program rehearse in the gymnasium. (Supplied by Dale Lee Kwong)

Playwright Dale Lee Kwong said the play is a chance for the students to really understand the legends, customs and culture of China. 

"To see a school of mostly Chinese students, and they're learning about their culture... the power that it gives them of knowing their own story," Kwong said.

"It's just great to foster their creativity, their imagination, and pride in their culture."

The school is one of four in the city with a Chinese Mandarin program.

Marion Carson School is also hosting its own Chinese New Year performance on Tuesday night at the school. 

This year, Chinese New Year falls on January 28. 


With files from the Calgary Eyeopener

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