Chinese New Year gala unites students from across the city to celebrate

Students' associations from Algonquin College, Carleton and University of Ottawa hosted the event together
Photo: Zixuan Li
The Chinese New Year Gala‘s final curtain call group photo.

On the first day of the lunar new year, Feb. 10, hundreds of Chinese students across Ottawa gathered at the Algonquin Commons Theatre to celebrate the lunar new year.

The Chinese New Year Gala is an annual celebration organized by the Chinese Students’ Association from Algonquin College, Carleton University, and the University of Ottawa.

“The three universities have already jointly hosted the gala for more than 10 years. This has become a tradition,” said Zhenghang Zhu, the minister of organization department of Carleton University Chinese Students’ Association.

The three students’ associations united more than 200 students from across the city, many of them are international students, with some domestic students coming alone with their Chinese friends.

Chinese ambassador to Canada, Cong Peiwu, also joined the event and made a speech at the beginning of the performances in the gala.

The gala is always held at the ACT because Zhu feels it is more modern and professional compared to other schools.

This year, the gala showcased a variety of performances, from band performances, individual raps, Peking Opera performances, and group dances, to spectacular martial arts performances.

“Last year’s program was more student-oriented, with many student-led performances,” said Linsen Jing, someone who attended both this year’s and last year’s gala. “This year, the audience seems to be more diverse. The program this year feels stricter compared to last year, with many local art groups from Ottawa participating. Overall, I feel like everyone did a great job.”

Sunkis singing his popular song Top Tier at Algonquin Commons Theatre
Sunkis singing his popular song "Top Tier" at Algonquin Commons Theatre. Photo credit: Zixuan Li

Unlike previous years, in addition to performances by students or local art groups, emerging Taiwanese-American singer Sunkis, who has 147,000 followers on Instagram, was invited to attend.

His arrival lit up the entire theater. Students sang along with Sunkis to “Top Tier,” “Trust Me” and “Like I Do.”

The ticket prices for this year increased greatly compared to last year. The price for regular seats went up from $28 last year to $48 this year.

“The number of students attending the gala is lower than in previous years,” Zhu said. “Last year was truly packed, but this year, it’s only about 70 to 80 per cent of last year’s attendance.”

The event was sponsored by Gyubee, Moose Knuckles, IAUSS and three other Chinese companies.

The Village: Innovative Performance Combining Traditional Dance and Rap
The Village, a local art group, presented a performance combining traditional dance and rap at the Algonquin Commons Theatre. Photo credit: Zixuan Li

Throughout the event, attendees had the chance to take part in a lottery for the chance to receive red envelopes containing small sums of money. There were also four rounds of raffle draws, with prizes including five sets of Lego toys, three Marshall Acton 2 speakers, four Moose down jackets and an iPhone 15 Pro Max.

“I originally didn’t think I would win any prize at all. I didn’t even have any expectations,” said Shirley Wang, an uOttawa communication student who won the iPhone 15 Pro Max. “But when I heard my seat number called out, I was so surprised, I couldn’t believe it.”

Zhu said that due to the interruption caused by the pandemic, many students and staff are not very familiar with the gala. This year’s event was the second since the pandemic.

“This year’s gala was generally well organized, but there is still room for improvement,” Zhu said.

Algonquin Times horoscopes
Algonquin Times podcast
Follow Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times on Instagram
Follow Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times podcast
Algonquin Times horoscopes

Sections

Algonquin Times podcast
Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times horoscopes
Follow Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times podcast
Follow Algonquin Times on Instagram
Algonquin Times horoscopes

Stay Informed

Sign up for our newsletter

You have been subscribed. Thank you!