Traditional music, dances and songs in praise of the culture and lifestyle of Cần Giờ are featured at the annual Nghinh Ông Festival in HCM City’s coastal district of Cần Giờ. VNA/VNS Photo
HCM CITY — The annual Nghinh Ông Festival has opened in HCM City’s Cần Giờ District.
The event, which began yesterday, features an outdoor music gala staged by artists from the city’s Light Music Centre at Cần Thạnh Town Park.
Traditional music, dances and songs in praise of the culture and lifestyle of Cần Giờ will be featured. Highlighted performances will include famous extracts from cải lương (reformed opera) and tuồng or hát bội (classical drama) about Việt Nam’s historical events and national heroes.
A procession on land and at sea followed by local residents in traditional costumes and dozens of fishing vessels will be held at 9am tomorrow (the16th of the eight lunar month).
The ritual will take place at Ông Thuỷ Tướng Temple (Temple Worshipping the Whale) and move to the sea. Local fishermen show respect for whales that help them at sea and worship them so they will have a good fish-catching season.
The organisers, HCM City’s Department of Culture and Sports and Cần Giờ District People’s Committee, will host a food festival, folk games, sports competitions, and a Mid-Autumn festival for residents and visitors during the three-day event.
Photos and objects featuring fishing activities of Cần Giờ people in the past centuries will be displayed.
The three-day Nghinh Ông Festival will include a procession on land and at sea followed by local residents in traditional costumes and dozens of fishing vessels at 9am tomorrow, the 16th day of the eighth lunar month. — VNA/VNS Photo
The Nghinh Ông Festival, the region’s only traditional festival for fishermen, was received national Intangible Heritage status in 2013.
Previously, the event took place in the middle of the third lunar month. Since 1914, due to changes in economic conditions, it has been organised from the 14th to 16th date in lunar August -- a successful month for local fishermen.
“We visit Nghing Ông Festival every year. The festival introduces our traditional culture to people everywhere and helps to promote local tourism,” said Nguyễn Văn Phúc, a resident of Cần Giờ.
Last year, the festival attracted nearly 70,000 local and foreign visitors. VNS