The primary objective of Hue Festival is to create a favorable condition for the culture of Hue to integrate, making it possible to become an attraction to tourists. The 10th Hue Festival will be celebrated in this regard.
Hue Festival 2018 will have many programs to honor five recognized world heritages
Promoting seven World Heritages
Researcher Nguyen Xuan Hoa, one of the organizers of the first Hue Festival, said the Festival was held on the basis of Hue culture. Since the very beginning, the Festival activities have reflected the cultural exchanges of participating countries.
More importantly, the Festival, where the values and profoundness of history is clarified, aims to honor and promote the culture of Hue. The ultimate goal is to create attractive tourist products to attract more visitors to Hue through the festival.
The Deputy-Director of the Hue Festival Center, Mr Huynh Tien Dat, said that the 10th Hue Festival, which is held between late April and early May, will continue its mission. The primary theme throughout Festivals, i.e., “Heritage along with Integration and Development,” has shown the objective. Hue Festival 2018 in particular will concentrate on promoting “Hue as a destination of five heritages.”
Participating in the festival, tourists as well as Hue locals will have an opportunity to explore and experience unique values of the five UNESCO-recognized heritages, namely, the Complex of Hue Monuments (1993), Hue Royal Court Music (2003), the Woodblock of Nguyen Dynasty (2009), the Imperial Records of Nguyen Dynasty (2014) and Literature on Royal Architecture (2016). Among these, the last three heritages have not widely known.
According to Mr. Huynh Tien Dat, nowhere else in the country as well as in the region can we find a city of seven UNESCO-recognized heritages like Hue. So said, it is because Hue, together with nine other provinces and cities in Central Vietnam, has recently co-owned the Intangible Cultural Heritage, namely, The Art of Bai Choi. In 2016, Hue was also among the co-owners of another recognized Intangible Cultural Heritage, that is, the practice of Vietnamese Mother Worship. These two special forms of art will be introduced through a variety of activities at the Hue Festival 2018 though they are not official themes.
The organizers reveal that Hue Festival 2018 will comprise activities associated with historical and cultural events significant to Hue and the country. These include 230th anniversary of Nguyen Hue’s accession to the throne at mount Ban (1788 – 2018); 50th anniversary of General offensive and uprising of the Mau Than Spring (1968 – 2018); 25th anniversary of the Complex of Hue Monuments recognized as World Cultural Heritage (1993 – 2018) and 15th anniversary of Hue Royal Court Music recognized as Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity (2003 – 2018). These are milestones of the development of Hue culture.
In addition, some royal festivals and other pre- and post-event festivals will continue to be held, such as Te Giao ritual, Xa Tac ritual, Huyen Tran Temple festival, Hon Chen Temple festival, the Vesak, and the re-enacting of Nguyen Hue accession to the throne.
Visiting Hue to learn more about culture and heritage
Van hien Kinh ki (Hue Royal Inspiration) is a program introducing and promoting the culture of Hue in detail and a unique manner. Based on the idea of the Royal Night show in previous Festivals, Van hien Kinh ki will be a combined performance of dance, chorus, animation, poetry, music, sound effects, light effects, color smoke and fireworks, as well as other stage-resonant factors.
The Vice-Director of Hue Center for Monument Conservation, Nguyen Phuoc Hai Trung, who is co-director of the program, said that the program would be a series of events, featuring five internationally recognized heritages. Van hien Kinh ki focuses on the construction and development of the ancient capital, the exercise of national sovereignty, and the unification of the territorial integrity and peaceful life, which are all created on the firm ground of a civilized country and the national independence in the history.
The national festival of hat van – hat chau van (a traditional folk art of Vietnam which combines trance singing and dancing) will be held within Hue Festival 2018. This is an event co-organized by The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and Thua Thien Hue People's Committee and participated by artists from 30 delegations throughout the country. This festival is to honor and promote artistic values of the form of hat van – hat chau van, according to leaders of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
One of the festivals in Hue Festival this year is Toa Sang Niem Tin (Enlighten Faith) organized by the provincial Buddhism Sangha with spiritual ceremonies incorporating art performances. The program will be of high quality and of uniqueness. The program also incorporates the ceremony of floating lotus flower lanterns on the River Huong, praying for the national peace.
Trinh Cong Son’s music night with the theme Hanh Huong (Pilgrimage) will also be re-performed at the 10th Festival with songs showing the return to the roots and to Hue and in a Trinh-Cong-Son-specific manner. Songs are selected to honor the cultural heritage and in the spirit of integration through Vietnamese-Japanese relations.
At the International Press Conference on Hue Festival 2018 in Hanoi late 2017, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Trinh Thi Thuy, said “with the experience after nine festivals, the 10th Hue Festival 2018 promises an impressive festival. The participation of many international art troupes performing a variety of cultural and artistic activities and the contribution of the locals will diversify the festival.”
Story and photo: Quang Sang