Liverpool Chinese New Year 2024: Huge fire-breathing dragon to illuminate Royal Albert Dock

A 25-metre dragon will float through the docks for three nights.
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A 25-metre dragon is set to sail across Liverpool as the city prepares to host its 'biggest ever' Lunar New Year celebrations.

In honour of the Year of the Dragon, a range of free events and activities will take place across the city, as well as newly commissioned cultural pieces.

In addition to the usual Chinatown takeover - which includes traditional dragon, lion and unicorn parades, firecracker displays, family workshops and more – Culture Liverpool has commissioned brand new cultural pieces to celebrate Europe’s oldest Chinese community, which will take place in the run up to the main day of celebrations and on the day itself (Sunday, February 11).

Additional activities will also be available at the Bombed Out Church, Liverpool ONE and the Royal Albert Dock, including an incredible fire-breathing dragon display.

Created by outdoor art experts, Walk The Plank, the 25-metre, illuminated dragon will float through the docks and Bring The Fire will also host an exciting fire street theatre featuring dance and martial arts. The events will run from 5.30pm to 9.00pm from February 9 to 11.

A 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image:  Salvo Toscano/Walk The PlankA 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image:  Salvo Toscano/Walk The Plank
A 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image: Salvo Toscano/Walk The Plank

Full Chinese New Year 2024 itinerary for Liverpool

  • From Friday, February 9 to Sunday, Feburary 11, the traditional Chinese story of the Boy and the Pearl will come to life as it is projected on the Bombed Out Church. Taking place from 6.00pm-9.00pm each night, the projections will transform the building with captivating animation and a newly composed soundscape. The show, which lasts for ten minutes, will run on a loop each evening. The work has been created by Focal Studios, in collaboration with Pagoda, the Bombed Out Church and local artists. To add to the atmosphere, around the church will be wooden dragon installations designed by local schools and community groups.
  • Walk The Plank and Bring The Fire will stage three nights of entertainment at the Royal Albert Dock. This will see a 25-metre, illuminated fire-breathing dragon floating through the dock system, an exciting fire street theatre featuring dance and martial arts. All activities will run from 5.30pm-9.00pm each night and more detailed timings will be announced soon. Bring The Fire will also showcase its stunning skills at Chinatown on the Sunday with a mesmerising, fire-finale at 4.30pm on the stage at Great George Square.
A 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image:  Salvo Toscano/Walk The PlankA 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image:  Salvo Toscano/Walk The Plank
A 25-metre dragon will swim across the docks. Image: Salvo Toscano/Walk The Plank
  • Free family-friendly workshops will be available at Chinatown on Sunday, Feburary 11 between 11.00am and 5.00pm – from lantern making sessions, traditional arts and crafts including dragon shadow puppetry, candle making and storytelling. Each session will see local artists sharing their skills to inspire creativity. The Mersey Forest team is also getting involved in the workshop action and will stage activities at the Bombed Out Church.
  • The Philharmonic Hall’s Music Room will play host to Harmony of the Dragon: A Chinese New Year Gala – an enchanting musical performance including a rendition of ‘Great Race’, a delightful tune associated with the CBBC programme of the same name. This is a ticketed event and all the information can be found on the venue’s website.