|Colourful kids: Organised by the city’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the festival will close on March 17. Last year, it attracted more than 50,000 foreign and local visitors. — Photo courtesy of organiser.|
HCMCITY— Models in áo dài (Vietnamese traditional dress) performed in a fashion show to open the annual Áo Dài Festival 2017 on HCM City’s Nguyễn Huệ Pedestrian Street in District 1 late on Friday.
The 90-minute event, called Tinh Hoa Áo Dài Việt (Quintessential Vietnamese Áo Dài), will feature new designs from collections by famous fashion designers such as Sĩ Hoàng, Minh Hạnh, Lan Hương, Liên Hương and Võ Việt Chung.
Miss Việt Nam 2016 Đỗ Mỹ Linh will also participate in the catwalk.
The models on the stage will be supported by singers and dancers from local traditional art troupes.
This year, the fourth festival’s theme is Áo Dài- Tôi Yêu Việt Nam (Áo Dài - I Love Việt Nam), aiming to honour and promote traditional cultural values as well as the beauty and grace of áo dài, a symbol of feminine beauty in Việt Nam.
The festival will continue with an open-air music and song programme, Áo Dài Việt - Nét Duyên Đi Cùng Tháng Năm (Vietnamese Áo Dài - Beauty Forever), programmes featuring pop stars and young singers, on Nguyễn Huệ Pedestrian Street at 7pm on Saturday.
Visitors will receive free áo dài tailoring services offered by skilled designers from more than 20 garment and textile companies and fashion houses, who will set up stalls on the street.
A special performance of more than 3,000 young people in áo dài on the Pedestrian Street will begin at 7pm on Sunday.
The performers will sing Việt Nam Ơi (Hi! Việt Nam), a song in praise of country and áo dài, together with the show Tôi Yêu Việt Nam (I Love Việt Nam).
Their show aims to make a Việt Nam Guinness Record for the biggest chorus.
A day later, an exhibition on áo dài at the Áo Dài Museum on Nguyễn Huệ Street and a contest on designing áo dài for the workplace as well as ceremonies and festivals at the Youth Cultural House will be featured.
Both events are aimed at students and young people.
“Through our activities, we hope to encourage people, both male and female who love and wear áo dài not only during the festival but also every day,” said Bùi Tá Hoàng Vũ, director of the HCM city Department of Tourism, a member of the festival’s organising board.
According to Vũ, dozens of photo and picture exhibitions on women in áo dài will also be held at universities, cultural centres, museums and libraries around the city, including HCM City’s Museum of Southern Women and HCM City General Science Library.
“We want the festival to be one of the city’s famous tourist productions,” he said.
Organised by the city’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the festival will close on March 17. Last year, it attracted more than 50,000 foreign and local visitors. — VNS