(8pm, Sunday 17 February 2013, Town Hall)
Thank you, [MC]. Hello, everyone - I hope you're all ready for a great evening. I would like firstly to acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the people of 200 nations who live in our City.
I also welcome and thank:
- His Excellency Duan Jielong, Consul-General of the People's Republic of China in Sydney and thank him for bringing our international participants to Sydney
- Mr Shu Xiao, Minister Counsellor for Culture representing His Excellency Chen Yuming, Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to Australia
- The Embassy of the People's Republic of China to Australia
- Madam Wu Yihuan, Vice Mayor of Shenzhen
- The Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China
- Shenzhen Municipal Bureau of Culture, Sports and Tourism
- Our Principal Sponsor, Medibank and all our sponsors, especially our major sponsors, The Star and AYAM, and
- Our Charity Partner, Taronga Foundation
- Councillor Robert Kok and the members of our Chinese New Year Festival Advisory Group
- Festival Ambassador, Adam Liaw
- The Festival Director, Gill Minervini and
- Her brilliant City of Sydney events team
- Councillors of the City of Sydney
- Distinguished guests
- Residents and visitors of Sydney, especially our Chinese, Vietnamese and Korean communities your associations and organisations who are all celebrating the Lunar New Year.
Welcome everyone to the City's 17th Chinese New Year Festival and to the start of the Year of the Snake.
We hope you enjoy this year's dazzling parade - with almost 3,000 performers in some spectacular costumes.
Please give a very warm Sydney welcome to the year's Chinese delegation - the four entries from the city of Shenzhen.
Have a great night, everyone. Happy Chinese New Year!
Kung Hei Fat Choy!