Tainan City for Da-Tang Dance Group

Performance Description: "Crazy for MaZu in March" is a very important festival and folk activity for believers. The worship of MaZu not only reflects the historical background of "TangShan crossing over Taiwan", but also represents the culture of the ocean.

MaZu would, according to legend, bless the local fishermen as they set out to brave the seas in search of fish, bestowing on them peace and good luck. Thus, Mazu became the patron goddess of seafarers、fishermen and most Taiwanese.

During the Festival of MaZu (Tin Hau Festival), which takes place on the 23rd day of the 3rd month of the lunar calendar, both fishermen and land-based residents spontaneously worship, make offerings and raise funds. The area in front of MaZu Temple is festooned with colorful lanterns, and believers call on the goddess for protection and bid for lucky charms. It is the most significant religious activity among people now.

The culture of MaZu spread south with the Fujianese fishermen to the coast of Guangdong Province, where she was deified by the community and given titles by emperors in various dynasties. Her influence became entrenched on China's southeast coast and on Taiwan. In October, 2009, MaZu customs and beliefs were selected into ?Intangible Cultural Heritage?.

MaZu, originally a mortal woman from Putian, Fujian Province, was named Lin, MoNiang. According to the legend, she was different from other people during her childhood. Once she met the Dao immortal and gained his help, she had magic for helping the villagers to avoid calamities and evil spirits.

In addition, MoNiang conquered the two monsters in the mountains and asked them to become valuable assistants to her. They determined to help people mercifully throughout their whole life. Hence, villagers adored them for their noble characters.

After MoNiang ascended to heaven, she riding the wind and driving the clouds flies in the sky and rescues people who meet difficulties.

Names of Performers*: Ma Hui-Min,Hsiao Chiu-Yun,Lin I-Pin,Hung Yu-Fen, Hung Chih-Ying,Hung Chih-YU,Hung Ying-Chia,Hung I-Han,Wong Hsin-Yu, Fang Yen-Cheng,Fang Shih-Yun,Wang Jia-Zhen,Zhang Ya-Ting,Chen Jian-Wei