HAKKA KEI-LUN DANCE - Unicorn

Nov 21, 2010 at the Tsung Tsin Association, Honolulu, Hawaii
HAKKA KEI-LUN DANCE 客家麒麟舞 

Good Afternoon everyone! Un Hao Mo?  My name is Shane Maihui and I am the Sifu or Chief Instructor of the Yeung Dak Physical Culture Dragon and Lion Dance Association. I am a disciple of Sifu Siu Hoy-Shing and we specialize in the arts of Tai Chi Praying Mantis and Shaolin Hung-Ga styles of martial arts.

Hok-San and Fut-Hok style of lion dance. The Hok-Chew style of dragon dance and finally, our most unique specialty of dance, the Hakka Unicorn Dance.

Today, my students and I have been given the great pleasure of sharing with you the unique and somewhat rarely seen art of the Unicorn or Kei-Lun Dance. Or, to be more specific, the Hakka Kei-Lun Dance.

To start, I would like to explain my personal lineage of learning this special art.

I am third generation disciple to the first and only Master who brought this art and played it in Hawaii many years ago. His name was Wong Gook-Fatt Sifu and his school name was the Young Chinese Physical Culture Association.

Wong Sifu was Hakka and I personally learned the Unicorn Dance from his son-in-law, Chang Dai-Fun Sifu.

Wong Sifu’s school no longer exists today but, the spirit and teaching of him and my Sifu still lives under the banner of our school.

To date, Yeung Dak is the only school in Hawaii that performs the dance as a clear and continuous representation of Sifu Wong’s legacy.

Next, I would like to explain the History and the Animal itself:

Along with the lion and dragon, the Kei-Lun is described as a creature of great benevolence.

Its appearance is very auspicious and is always a sign of great prosperity.

The story of the first sighting of the Kei-Lun dates back many, many years ago during the times of the great Dynasties of China.

It is said that one day, as an Emperor was sitting near the banks of the Huang Ho River, a strange creature rose from the waters.

The Emperor described the creature as having the head of a deer or dragon, the body in the shape of a deer, scales like a fish on its body, a tail similar to a bull, the hooves of a horse and a single fleshy horn on its head.

On its back, it bore magical symbols which later inspired this Emperor to develop the first written language of China.

Other stories also say that the Kei-Lun was a sacred pet of Heaven, second only to the Dragon.

The Kei-Lun is described to be very mild-mannered or very gentlemanly.

It is very gentle and refined in its mood or behavior and it is said that it can walk on grass without crushing it and walk on water without causing ripples.

The Kei-Lun punishes only the evil and protects the good and though it is gentle, can become fierce if a good person is threatened by evil.

Now, I would like to explain the connection between the Kei-Lun and the Hakka:

Some say that the Kei-Lun is strictly Hakka by origin. This is false.

The Kei-Lun is all Chinese but, with different styles or variations. There are the two main styles, the North and South versions.  Then, you have the Hakka Kei-Lun and the Kei-Lun of the Punti or ‘Local People’.  The main differences between the Hakka and Punti Kei-Lun are:

The Hakka version has a smaller head while the Punti version has a large head, sometimes as large as a lion head.

The Hakka Kei-Lun has a horn in the shape of a gourd which represents ‘grabbing wealth’ while the Punti Kei-Lun has a fish instead of a horn to represent ‘a lot of wealth’.

Other characteristic of the Hakka Kei-Lun is that it has the symbol of the ‘Baat Gua’ on its forehead to symbolize protection and usually, there are good luck saying written on its back or collar going along with the story of the Emperor and the inspiration of the first Chinese language. 

And, usually, the color of the fabric for the tail is 5 different colors to represent the five directions. 

Now, the reason why the Kei-Lun is most commonly associated with the Hakka is for the fact that they did not want to cause trouble with the Punti.

Being that the Punti would choose to perform the lion or dragon more than they would perform the Kei-Lun, the Hakka felt this would be the perfect creature to perform at celebrations that will not cause conflict with the Punti, especially, if they would meet during performances. This is the reason why my Grandmaster, Wong Gook-Fatt decided to perform the Kei-Lun instead of the Lion Dance as not to cause conflict between his school and the only other Kung-Fu school in Hawaii at that time, Jeng-Mo Chinese Physical Culture Association which strictly performed the lion dance. When performing the Kei-Lun, like the lion or dragon dance, all performers are martial arts students.

But, unlike the lion dance, the stances and footwork of the Kei-Lun stress low stances. At most times, the performers must bend and sit low two to three feet from the ground. Sometimes, when a Kei-Lun meets other Kei-lun, lions or the dragon, the performers could actually lay on the ground to go as low as possible to show the Kei-Lun’s great repect. The lower the stance, the more gentle, courteous and respectful the Kei-Lun is. The lower stances show the great achievement and ability of the performers training and strength

The instruments of the dance are a large gong, large cymbals and a small drum.
For our school, I have changed only one thing, that is the size of the drum which we use our large lion drums, still the rhythm and spirit of the music remains the same.

To finish off, we would like to perform a short demonstration of the Kei-Lun “picking the greens”.

This will give you the best idea of everything I have just explained and a much more fun way to enjoy the dance.


I would like to give my most humble and greatest thanks of appreciation to your president, Anita and assistant English secretary, Kristine for contacting me and allowing me and my students the great honor of coming to your beautiful society to share the afternoon with you all.

DO-CHA!!!



DESCRIPTION OF 

YEUNG DAK DRAGON AND LION DANCE ASSOCIATION 

The Yeung Dak Physical Culture Dragon and Lion Dance Association was officially established on the birthday of their grand patron saint, Kuan-Yu, the saint of martial arts and righteousness in July 2006. The Association specializes in the arts of Shaolin Hung-Ga and Bak Sing Pai Tai Gik Tong Long (Northern Tai Chi Praying Mantis) style of martial arts, Hok-San and Fut-Hok styles of lion dancing, Hok-Chew dragon dancing and the Hakka Kei-lun (Chinese unicorn) dance.

The Association is housed at the beautiful Buck Toy Society building located at 572 North Vineyard Blvd in Honolulu.
The home of their additional patron saint, Hong Gong Ju Sui of Buck Toy Village in China

Yeung Dak is both enriched and headed by our Si-Gung, Grandmaster Siu Hoi-Shing and his dedicated disciple, Si-Fu Shane Maihui. Si-Fu is also assisted by his core group of senior and junior assistant instructors.
Yeung Dak is also very fortunate to be guided by their large group of supporting advisors and continues to move strongly forward due to the tireless efforts and dedication of its proud membership.

Since the Associations birth, the members of Yeung Dak have participated in many major community functions and private events to help usher in good luck and bless these occasions with their high-spirited dancing dragons, lions and unicorns.
All the beautiful dancing animals and equipment you see being used by the Association are supplied by EMPLION of Singapore, GIFTASIA of Hong Kong, OF COURSE LION SOURCE of San Francisco, CA and DING FENG HANG also of Singapore.

Yeung Dak's vision and belief is based upon their Code of the Eight Chief Virtues and the Rules of Law.
Where all members, senior and youth, must both practice and live by to help foster a better community and that of self-being.
Along with their mission and common purpose to help maintain, perpetuate and preserve the aspects of the Chinese Culture and to help educate people for the generations of tomorrow.

Yeung Dak is classified as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization by the Internal Revenue Service

YEUNG DAK PHYSICAL CULTURE DARGON AND LION DANCE ASSOCIATION
572 N. Vineyard Blvd.
Honolulu, HI 96817
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