Commercialization threatens traditional festivals

Well-known traditional festivals in Vietnam like Lim – Bac Ninh love duet or Vieng – buying good luck, selling bad luck are being commercialized. Their traditional values are being eroded.

Preserving traditional festivals so that they are original and “old” is a difficult task but visitors still want them to maintain their “soul” and spiritual beauty..

Vieng Market Festival becomes gambling arena

The Vieng Market Festival in Vu Ban district, Nam Dinh province is very unique in conception: purchasing good luck, selling bad luck.

Visitors go to the market in early year to buy new tools and they think that the tools will bring good lucks for them in the new year.

Caption: Quan ho singers use micros and speakers at the Lim Festival. (photo: Nguoi Lao Dong)
The Vieng Market Festival 2011 was still organized under that conception but inside the market was a gambling arena. Gambling was favored at the festival because many visitors expected that they would win in gambling and this would bring good luck for them.

A young man from Hai Hau district, Nam Dinh province, who used to sell ornamental trees at the Vieng Market, decided to not sell trees but organize “lottery” services instead.

“I have to change my business because I can earn money from this service more easily than selling trees,” he said.

This man was considered as “keeping up with the times” because traditional items were no longer marketable at the Vieng Market Festival in comparison with gambling.

The tools that were considered lucky for buyers (agricultural tools and products) have become “outdated”. As a result, the number of visitors to the festival has decreased in the last two years. The prestige of the festival has been seriously harmed.

Vieng Market Festival: the festival is launched on the annual 8th day of the first lunar month, only once in a year, when people have just finished celebrating Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday.

Legend has it that Vieng market is somehow linked to the person who brought copper casting to the area, Nguyen Minh Khong, so people who go the market feel that they will get lucky if they buy something made of copper at Vieng market on this day.

The market opens on the 8th of lunar January, but the most spiritual moment falls on the night of the 7th and early 8th. That is the moment of heavenly and earthly, positive-negative exchange. According to the popular belief, at the time, men and Gods could reach each other and all prayers could be perceived more clearly. At that time trade could take place smoothly.

Consequently, visitors often come to the market on the night of 7th more than on the following 8th. The market on the night of 7th is called “Cho am phu” (Hades Market). The market-goers not only just enjoy the market atmosphere but also bring along the feeling toward Mother, praying for fortune and favorable weather, rich crops, and a happy family. They buy and sell their hopes for luck during the rest of the year.

Vieng market is actually typical to an agricultural countryside that is rich in natural products, a kind of radiant open-air “fair” produced by the local farmers, especially ornamental plants, specialty crops, subtle craft articles, utensils, bronze and iron-made tools, etc. This spring market displays handicraft products, antiquities and false antiquities, utensils, tools for agriculture production, and many kinds of ornamental plants. Specialties are barbecued beef and “banh day” (sticky rice cake).

The cheapest things at Vieng would be flowers and trees, which bring both the buyer and seller happiness and luck. From around 2a.m, deals are done under the light of candles or flash-lights. Deals are agreed on quickly, as people believe, to keep the luck. From 6a.m, local people bring farming tools such as hoes and sickles to sell, which relate closely to their lives. Buyers believe that the tools will bring them health and richness. Vieng market also is also a place to relax. Lovers could find each other or their happy future here.

Above all, everyone visiting the market just wishes to buy the burnt veal at any cost, which is considered an indispensable gift from the market and bliss to the Vieng market-goers.

Lim Festival out of graces

Nguyen Van Loc, a senior male quan ho singer from Tien Du district, Bac Ninh province said sadly: “The current Lim Festival is very different from the original festival. It is out of graces!”

According to Loc, quan ho singers used to sing love duets on boats and on the river bank, not on stages with micros and speakers like it is nowadays. Many people wear ao tu than (the costume of quan ho singers) to sell CDs at the festival.

Quan ho artisans from famous quan ho villages like Dao Xa, Dang Xa, Thanh Son and Thi Cau know the facts but they are unable to save the festival.

The UNESCO recognized quan ho as the World Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2010 so visitors expected a big change at the Lim Festival 2011.

Good news was unveiled: since 2011, the Lim Festival will be organized originally. Quan ho singers will no longer use microphones and speakers.

Nguyen Huu Manh, Vice Chair of Tien Du District and Chief of the organizing board of the Lim Festival confirmed his determination to maintain the traditional values of the festival from now on.

Lim Festival: "Quan Ho" is a special folk song of Kinh Bac, now called Bac Ninh Province. Lim is the simple name of Lung Giang Commune of Tien Son District in Bac Ninh Province. The village is located 18 km from Hanoi. The festival takes place on Lim Hill where the Lim Pagoda is located. This pagoda is where Mr. Hieu Trung Hau, the man who invented quan ho, is worshipped.

The Lim Festival takes place every year on 13th day of the 1st lunar month. Visitors come to enjoy the festival and see the performances of "lien anh" (male quan ho singers) and "lien chi" (female singers). These are male and female farmers who sing different types of songs in the pagodas, on the hills, and in the boats. Besides this, visitors can come to the Lim Festival to enjoy the weaving competition of the Noi Due girls. They weave and sing quan ho songs at the same time. Like other religious festivals, the Lim Festival goes through all the ritual stages, from the procession to the worshipping ceremony, and includes other activities.

The Lim Festival is a special cultural activity in the North. The festival celebrates the quan ho folk song which has become a part of the national culture and a typical folk song that is well loved in the Red River Delta region.



tải game điện thoại - Agents for modeling - Gai xinh - Visa Vietnam - Vietnam Express Visa - Teen Teen - Tai iOnline Mien Phi - Game Java