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Animated Central Highlands Festival days in Hanoi
By Nguyen Thu Hien

Performers from the Central Highlands beat their gongs at the opening festival.
The Tay Nguyen (Central Highlands) Culture Days was opened at the Vietnam Culture and Art Exhibition Centre in Hanoi on the evening of August 30 in a grand atmosphere to celebrate the 57th anniversaries of the August Revolution and National Day.

The centre is bedecked with colourful lights and patterns permeated with the Central Highlands spirit. The gate of the exhibition centre is displayed with a banner bearing a line: ‘Central Highlands Culture Days,’ along with the national and Party flags. Standing in the middle of three newly-built houses is a large ground containing an open stage decorated splendidly. In the middle of the ground stands a symbolic neu tree (pole) of the Central Highlands.

The opening festival began with horn blown by village chiefs. The sound of the horn echoed back like the sacred call of the Central Highlands’ mountains and forests. The festival continued with performances of gongs, popular instruments of the Central Highlanders. As soon as the sound of gongs had stopped, Deputy Minister of Culture and Information Vu Trong Toan made a speech to highlight the significance of the festival. He stressed: “Nearly 300 artists, artisans and cultural and art activists from villages in the Central Highlands will vividly introduce cultural values of lives and community rites, the achievements the Central Highlands has gained in the national renovation process. This is a good opportunity to confirm the vitality and the longevity of cultural identity of the ethnic minority groups in the Central Highlands.”

After the nine gongs beats struck to open the festival by Minister of Culture and Information Pham Quang Nghi, the stage was animated with art performing items. This is the first time Hanoi audiences could be able to enjoy an overall picture of the original art of the ethnic minority groups in the Central Highlands. Each Central Highlands province selects two most special performing items. Boys and girls of different groups were in various colourful costumes with joyful and natural expressions and smiles that are as beautiful as forest flowers. They were like nightingales of high mountains and jungles and po-lang flowers on the mountain peak sparkling in the brilliant lights of Hanoi capital.

Art troupes in turn gave performances extracted from traditional festivals such as a new rice celebrations of Dak Lak and Gia Lai, Xo dang dance of Kon Tum, and villages opening festivals of Lam Dong.

After art performances, the exhibition on ‘The Central Highlands on the Renovation Way’ and ‘Cultural Characteristics of four Central Highlands Provinces’ was opened. The exhibition features images of the Central Highlanders with the Party and beloved President Ho Chi Minh, the colours of Central Highlands culture, the Central Highlands on the renovation path and cultural characteristics of Gia Lai, Kon Tum, Dak Lak and Lam Dong provinces.

The opening night of the Central Highlands Culture Days was very impressive. The warm and deep sound of the Central Highlands mountains and forests will stay forever in the heart and soul of the people of the capital city.

Reprinted with permission from Nhan Dan Newspaper.


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