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Vietnam’s imperial city gears up for Hue Festival

Vietnam’s imperial city gears up for Hue Festival

Wednesday, April 09, 2014, 08:33 GMT+7

As the 2014 Hue Festival is only some days away, Hue City is making its final touches for its hallmark art festival, which will be joined by some 46 art troupes from 37 countries.

With this year’s festival, the 8th so far, set to open on April 12, domestic and foreign tourists have been flocking to the city in recent days.

The number of participants is expected to reach dozens of thousands during nine days of the festivities.

Preparations are also getting underway in this romantic city, located in central Vietnam.

The Hue Royal Citadel, the festival’s main space, boasts eight sparklingly lit stages, which will see the compelling performances by roughly 1,400 local and foreign artists from some 37 countries.

Fashion enthusiasts will be delighted by a show titled “Dem Phuong Dong” (Oriental Night), which is slated to take place at the Dai Trieu Nghi yard and features fashion performances from 11 Asian countries, along with an “ao dai” (traditional Vietnamese long gown) show.

The “Dem Hoang Cung” (The Courtly Night) performance, which includes courtly feasts and age-old, royal games will also be put on at the Hue Royal Citadel.

Meanwhile, An Dinh Palace promises to appeal hugely to youths with fiery performances by celebrated contemporary bands from Vietnam, the UK, France, German, Norway, Australia, Israel, and Congo.

The well-loved circus play “Lang Toi” (My Village), which has been staged successfully in France and several other European countries, will also make it to the festival.

Many fetes taking place throughout Hue City and neighboring areas will showcase international dances, culinary delights, kites, and ornamental birds.

Other highlights will include fairs, countryside markets, and poem recitations in addition to exhibitions on art, photography, antiques and traditional crafts, as well as re-creations of cultural space.

The 2014 Hue Festival will also spotlight Hue’s court music, which was recognized by the UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2003, along with the city’s signature folk melodies.

Another feature is an art program to honor Hue’s traditional art genres.

According to the organizers, apart from performing onstage, the foreign art troupes will also take part in performances in several rural and mountainous areas.

Entrance to the Dem Hoang Cung (Courtly Night) program including a royal feast costs VND2 million (US$94), the highest at this year’s festival.

Tickets to the festival opening, art programs, the “ao dai” show, and the closing night range from VND100,000 ($4.7) to VND300,000 ($14).

On April 6, more than 1,000 local youths gave a gripping flashmob dance performance along the city’s hallmark Huong River bank.

The dance, funded by the Hue Festival Center, began the local youth’s activities to support the grand event.

During the participants’ several weeks of practice, information, photos and video clips which promoted the flashmob were published on YouTube and social networks to arouse viewers’ interest.

The Hue Festival has established its name after seven successful seasons and grown to be a time-honored and contemporary art rendezvous for locals and foreigners alike.

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