March festival to highlight India

Update: February, 25/2014 - 09:53
Bollywood style: The Festival of India in Viet Nam will present traditional dances that underpin popular routines featured prominently in India's feature films. — Photo courtesy Indian Embassy

HA NOI  (VNS) — Those interested in India's culture will have ample opportunity to feast their eyes and ears on a wide range of activities at the Festival of India being held in Viet Nam next month.

The festival, presenting classical and folk dances, Buddhism, Indian food, Mehendi art, and yoga will be held in Ha Noi, Da Nang and HCM City from March 5-15.

Jointly organised by Indian and Vietnamese culture ministries, the event seeks to promote cultural links between the two countries.

Nrityarupa, a mosaic of India's classical dances, will open Festival of India at the Ha Noi Opera House on March 5, followed by three performances on March 6, 7 and 8 at the University of Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Transport and Technology, and Ho Chi Minh Museum.

Entries to all classical dance performances are free, however entry passes are required for performances at the Opera House and Ho Chi Minh Museum. Passes are available at the Indian Embassy, 58-60 Tran Hung Dao Street, Ha Noi or phone (04) 38244989/90/94.

The dance recital will also be performed in Da Nang on March 11 and HCM City on March 14-15.

Highlights of the festival will include the Buddhist Festival, which will present demonstrations of meditation, lama dances and chanting by Buddhist monks from India.

The Buddhist Festival will take place at Phat Tich Pagoda in the northern province of Bac Ninh from March 11-15, and at Pho Quang and Vinh Nghiem pagodas in HCM City from March 6-10.

Additionally, the festival in Bac Ninh will feature a sand mandala, or circle, and butter sculpture. Meanwhile, HCM City residents will have the opportunity to experience the life and teachings of Buddha through a Buddhist exhibition, entitled Dharam Darshan, at the Fine Arts Museum from March 6-14.

Chefs from India are being flown in to prepare Indian dishes at the Food Festival, which will take place in Ha Noi from March 6-8 at the Sheraton Hotel, and on March 9 and 10 at the Water Sports Place in My Dinh Sports Complex. The Food Festival continues in HCM City from March 12-15.

Also, a folk dance troupe, Kalbelia, will perform during the Food Festival, and a Mehendi artist from India will be present to demonstrate Henna hand paintings.

For yoga enthusiasts, two teachers from India will offer yoga lectures and demonstrations in Ha Noi from March 6-8, and in HCM City from March 11-15. Entry to the classes, held at the Elite Fitness branches on Xuan Dieu and Ly Thuong Kiet streets, will be free.

Indian Ambassador to Viet Nam Preeti Saran expressed her hope that the festival will help Vietnamese people would better understand Indian culture and people. She also said India would expand its activities in the coming years to present a wide range of Indian culture to the people of Viet Nam, including Indian films and tourism opportunities. — VNS