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First Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage for Hong Kong announced
     The Leisure and Cultural Services Department today (August 14) announced the first Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Hong Kong, which comprises 20 items. The Representative List will provide the Government with a basis for prioritising resources and safeguarding measures for intangible cultural heritage (ICH) items, especially those of high cultural value and with an urgent need for preservation.
     The items on the Representative List include nanyin (southern tunes), spring and autumn ancestral worship of clans, the Tin Hau Festival in Hong Kong, Mid-Autumn Festival - the Pok Fu Lam fire dragon dance, the Taoist ritual tradition of the Zhengyi school, the sek pun (basin feast), the Hong Kong-style milk tea making technique, the paper crafting technique, the sewing techniques of Hong Kong-style cheongsam and kwan kwa wedding costume, and the bamboo theatre building technique. Apart from these, the 10 local items which have already been inscribed onto a higher threshold - the national list of ICH - were automatically included in the Representative List. They are Cantonese opera, herbal tea, the Cheung Chau Jiao Festival, the Tai O dragon boat water parade, the Yu Lan Ghost Festival of the Hong Kong Chiu Chow community, Mid-Autumn Festival - the Tai Hang fire dragon dance, the arts of the guqin (the craft of qin making), Quanzhen temples Taoist ritual music, the Hakka unicorn dance in Hang Hau in Sai Kung, and Wong Tai Sin belief and customs. Please refer to the annex for brief descriptions of the 20 items.
     The first 10 items mentioned above were recommended by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Advisory Committee (ICHAC) after deliberation on the 480 items of the first ICH inventory of Hong Kong. The Government then launched in February this year a three-month public consultation to gauge public views on these 10 recommended items. More than 200 public opinions were received with the majority of the public supporting the recommendations.
     The selection criteria of the Representative List deliberated and endorsed by the ICHAC are as follows:
(a) the item has been inscribed onto the ICH inventory of Hong Kong;
(b) the item embodies local traditional culture and carries significant historical, literary, artistic, scientific, technological or arts and crafts values;
(c) the item is transmitted from generation to generation and has a dynamic and living nature;
(d) the item possesses the distinct traits of an ethnic group or a region, or manifests the characteristics of the local living culture as a typical example of that culture; and
(e) the item exerts significant influence on the community, reinforces community ties and provides communities or groups with a sense of identity and continuity.
     The Government attaches great importance to safeguarding ICH, and endeavours to enhance public awareness and understanding of ICH. Some of the important measures taken by the Government have included the announcement of the first ICH inventory of Hong Kong in 2014 which covered 480 items, the establishment of the ICH Office in 2015, and the setting up of the ICH Centre in the Sam Tung Uk Museum in 2016.
     To further safeguard local ICH, the ICH Office will closely liaise and collaborate with the respective organisations and bearers to step up efforts on the education, promotion and transmission of the items on the Representative List. In 2017-18, the ICH Office will organise an array of activities such as a special exhibition to feature items on the Representative List, workshops, bearer demonstrations, fun days and more to enhance public understanding and knowledge of items on the Representative List. The General Chinese Charities Fund, which is under the purview of the Home Affairs Bureau, will launch a pilot scheme to provide funding support for activities promoting ICH items at the community level. Details of the pilot scheme will be announced in due course.
Ends/Monday, August 14, 2017
Issued at HKT 18:10
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