Thanh Hoá set to celebrate 990th birthday in style

April 23, 2019 - 07:51
As many as 500 artists will perform at a special show to mark the 990th anniversary of the establishment of the province of Thanh Hóa on May 8.


The 3D illustration of the stage for the special art performance to mark the 990th anniversary of the establishment of the north central province of Thanh Hóa. — Photo courtesy of the director

HÀ NỘI — As many as 500 artists will perform at a special show to mark the 990th anniversary of the establishment of the province of Thanh Hóa on May 8.

The audience will be treated to art forms such as tuồng (classical drama), chèo (traditional operetta), bronze drum performances, recitation and folk singing.

Lam Sơn Square will be turned into a kaleidoscopic stage for the grand ceremony, giving the audience a glimpse of Thanh Hóa’s traditions, history, culture and development over the centuries, with the use of breath-taking effects, lighting, music and choreography.

The programme is directed by popular theatre playwright and director Lê Quý Dương, who has experiences in directing the Đà Nẵng International Fireworks Festival, Huế Festival and the grand ceremony marking the 1,050th anniversary of Đại Cồ Việt (the former name of Việt Nam).

He said at a press conference held recently in Hà Nội that some specific art genres will be performed on a stage with iconic symbols of Thanh Hóa Province, including Đồng Cổ Temple, the citadel of the Hồ Dynasty, Lê Lợi statute, and Hàm Rồng Bridge.

Dương told Việt Nam News that through the 50-minute-long programme, he is attempting to give a brief introduction about the locality and it’s not easy to because there are many things to tell.

“Thanh Hóa is a locality that witnessed the appearance of Vietnamese people in prehistory and different historical periods of the nation through dynasties.”

With the theme ‘Shining with the Nation’, the programme will be divided into three chapters: a sacred land of extraordinary people, heroic traditions and aspirations for prosperity.

The content of the festival included consultation from the provincial Government and a council of artists and experts such as People’s Artist Nguyễn Quang Vinh, historian Lê Ngọc Tạo, and archaeologist Tống Trung Tín.

The performance will take place at Lam Sơn Square which has 20,000 seats. The highlight of the stage is a bronze drum 15 metres in diameter to pay respect to the god of bronze drums, who is worshipped at Đồng Cổ, the oldest temple in Thanh Hoá Province.

The god of bronze drums will narrate the stories to reflect the establishment and development of the locality.

Famous artists taking part to the performance include People’s Artist Hương Thơm, singers Trọng Tấn, Anh Thơ, Huyền Trang, and Lê Anh Dũng, as well as artists from Lam Sơn Theatre, and Vietnamese traditional martial artists.

Fireworks artists from Singapore will use nearly 3,000 fireworks to create a colourful and dazzling performance.

Dương expects that the combination of traditional arts and modern effects will offer an amazing experience for the audience.

Meritorious Artist Mạnh Tiến, music director of the programme, said through art genres, the young generation will understand and respect the culture, history and tradition of their homeland.

“There should be more programmes on culture and history of the nation like this,” he said.

“Now we are all ready for the performance. Among 500 artists, many were born in Thanh Hoá and they are proud to perform at the celebration.”

In the framework of the programme, an exhibition of Thanh Hóa – Past and Present will display 2,000 documents, photos and objects.

Last month, a worship ceremony dedicated to Heaven and Earth was held for the first time after 617 years at Nam Giao Worship Platform built during the Hồ Dynasty in 1402. The ceremony was part of a series of events organised this year to celebrate the 990th anniversary of the founding of the province.

Historical documents say Nam Giao Worshipping Ceremony was one of the most important rituals under feudalism to confirm the power of the kings, who were assigned by Heaven and Earth to manage the country and people. Under the reign of Hồ Quý Ly (1336-1407), the ceremony was conducted by the king every year to wish for prosperity.

The Nam Giao Platform at the Hồ Dynasty Citadel is among the three most ancient and intact worshipping platforms of its kind in Việt Nam. — VNS