The Microsoft Chinese New Year Celebration, also know as the Microsoft Asian Spring Festival, welcomes the coming of the Lunar new year. This year is the year of the rabbit. The festival is the largest diversity and inclusion event in Microsoft, as well as the biggest Spring Festival celebration in the Seattle area. Yes, the MS Chinese New Year event is bigger than any festival the city of Seattle can put on.
The event is a great way to learn and experience the diversified Asian cultures. The festival activities include Chinese calligraphy, Chinese drawing, stage performance and karaoke, photo booth, riddle competition, KINECT games, dancing, kid activities (bouncing house, face painting, magician, etc.) and many more.
The evening grand celebration show is a blend of eastern and western culture, art, music, and fashion. There was a multi-cultural fashion show, bilingual rap performed by Xiao-Chuan Yang, Microsoft’s Got Talent, Talk Show by North American Brother Sway (北美崔哥脱口秀), Bollywood dance by Nalini and The Blue Lotus Dance Co., Symphonic Music by Chinese traditional and Western classical instruments (国乐大合奏) and more.
While there were tons of things to do at the MS Chinese New Year Celebration, I was there for one purpose and that was to get Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to sign my Apple iPad. Unfortunately, Steve didn’t stick around after his pep talk so I failed to get my iPad signed. My consolation prize was watching the MS Bing team sing Amazing Bing to the tune of Amazing Grace.