The word Chingay is equivalent to the Mandarin word 妆艺 (zhuangyi) which means the art of costume and masquerade in the Hokkien dialect. Here in Singapore, the Chingay Parade started in 1973 as a street parade to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Since then, it has evolved into an annual iconic event that showcases Singapore's rich and unique multi-ethnic and cosmopolitan cultures.
The first formal Chingay Parade in Singapore was mooted by our founding Prime Minister the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, who was also the former Chairman of the People's Association (PA). The celebrations, with all its colours and gaiety, compensated for the ban on firecrackers that was once a customary Lunar New Year practice to ward off evil spirits.
Chingay is now a uniquely Singaporean tradition that is usually held during the second week of the Lunar New Year and celebrated by Singaporeans and Singapore residents from all ethnicities - Chinese, Malays, Indians, Eurasians and many others. Characterised by vibrant performers in elaborates costumes from different ethnicity, cultures and backgrounds; dazzling display of floats; huge intricate props and structures and cultural performances from all around the world, Chingay is one of Asia's largest street performance and float parade. The parade has been held at F1 Pit Building for the past 10 years.
This signature event offers Chingay audiences a treasured glimpse into the dynamism of Singapore's multi-culturalism and exciting global cultures, proudly created by our people for the people as we come together to celebrate as ONE.