Xoan singing festival for teenagers in Viet Tri city
On April 3, the first Xoan singing festival for teenagers took place in Viet Tri city, the northern midland province of Phu Tho.
The festival drew the participation of more than 40 youth, ranging from six to 18 years old. This was one of the activities to celebrate Hung Kings’ death anniversary and the 2014 Hung King’s festival. The event glorified cultural identities of the province, encouraged patriotism, showed gratitude to Hung Kings and their contributions to national construction.
The event also contributed to show the commitment of the action progames of Phu Tho province with UNESCO for the preservation and promotion of Xoan singing.
Xoan singing, a vocal art of villages in the ancestral land of Phu Tho, is usually performed in front of the communal house during the village festivals in the spring. Based on legends and historical, archeological and social records, researchers say that Xoan singing first appeared more than 2,000 years ago, during the time when Hung Kings established the nation.
To help Xoan singing from falling into oblivion, since August 2009, Phu Tho province coordinated with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and UNESCO to organise workshops on this art form. Additionally, they submitted a request for Xoan singing for UNESCO recognition as an intangible cultural heritage in need of urgent safeguarding.
In 2011, the art form was recognized as an intangible cultural heritage in need of urgent protection by UNESCO.
In 2014, the Government allocated USD 7.85 million in an effort to encourage artisans, amateur singers and young people in the province to preserve the art form. Under the project, a centre for training local singers will be established, researchers will work to digitalize Xoan songs and traditional festivals will be restored.