Grass Dragon Dance

The grass dragon dance is a recreational custom of the Mulao minority in the Guangxi autonomous region.

The dragon is made of dried grain stalk straws. The weavers weaved a long grasscloth strip with the end slightly pointing upward and arranged to form a three-pointed fork, which forms the ‘dragon tail’. At the other end of the grasscloth strip, two twisted angles were formed curling upwards to form the ‘dragon head’. In the centre of the grasscloth strip, a small bunch of grass with a bamboo stick is tied at every 2m to form the ‘dragon body’. At the front of the dragon head, grasses were rolled into a ball to form the ‘dragon pearl’ and coloured papers were used to decorate the dragon’s head, body and the tail.

During the Spring Festival, the grass dragon dance is performed taking a route through the whole village finishing at the riverside where the grass dragon is then burned to symbolize the return to the dragon palace. It is a custom that when the village encounters any disaster or prolong drought, the grass dragon is brought to the riverside and burned with the hope that the ’Dragon King’ would resolve the calamities.