Vietnam Festival in Sapporo Boosts Vietnamese Culture in Japan

On September 10, Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2019 was officially kicked off in Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan.

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Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022 Officially Kicked Off
Delegates attend the opening ceremony. Source: International Cooperation Department, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism

The 2022 Vietnam Festival in Sapporo is underway on September 10-11 by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in collaboration with the Vietnamese Embassy in Japan and Sapporo City.

Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Trinh Thi Thuy led the delegation to attend the festival and a special art troupe from the Viet Bac Folk Music and Dance Theater.

Attending the opening ceremony of the festival, on the Vietnamese side, there were Truong Thi Mai, Politburo member, Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee and head of its Organising Commission; Le Hoai Trung, head of the Party Central Committee’s Commission for External Relations; Mai Van Chinh, deputy head of the Standing Committee, the Central Organizing Committee; together with leaders and parliamentarians of Quang Ninh, Ninh Binh, Lang Son, Thua Thien – Hue provinces, representative of the Vietnamese Embassy in Vietnam Japan and Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

On the Japanese side, there were Takebe Tsutomu, special advisor to the Japan – Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Alliance; Hokkaido Prefecture’s Deputy Governor Tsuchiya Shunsuke; Nakata Takahiro, chairman of Sapporo City Executive Committee and representatives of leaders of Japanese ministries and local businesses.

Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022 Officially Kicked Off
Delegates visit booth of Quang Ninh province.

Speaking at the opening of the festival, Truong Thi Mai, who is also chairwoman of the Vietnam – Japan Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group, assessed the Vietnam Festival in Sapporo as an event of friendship and friendship between the two countries, strengthening the connection between the people of Vietnam and Japan.

The exchange between Vietnamese and Japanese artists and the exchanges between the people of the two countries both show the cultural characteristics of each country and also as the interweaving and blending of the common values ​​that the two cultures shared together, all will create the color and success of the festival.

With special affection and enthusiasm for Vietnam and the Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022, honor head of the festival organizing committee Takebe Tsutomu said that this event is a continuation of the 2019 edition, although Covid-19 is still present in Japan, the organization of this festival is considered as a shining point in cultural and art exchange cooperation between the two countries, creating bridges to cultivate friendship, strengthen ties, towards the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations in 2023.

The festival is also the beginning of a new period of post-covid cooperation between the two countries and between the two countries and its localities, he added.

Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022 Officially Kicked Off
The event also aims to promote the image of the land and people of Vietnam as well as the cultural and tourism potentials and values.
Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022 Officially Kicked Off
For the first time the traditional ‘Then’ singing and the ‘dan tinh’ (gourd lute) of the Tay, Nung and Thai ethnic minority groups, can be played at an outdoor stage for the Japanese public.

The festival received the attention and love of a large number of people in Hokkaido province, the Vietnamese community in Hokkaido province, in which the typical performance of the art performance to welcome the opening of the ceremony was performed by artists from the Viet Bac Folk Music and Dance Theater

The art repertoire opened up a unique, new and different Vietnamese art space including the Tac Xinh dance of the San Chay ethnic minority people in the northern province of Thai Nguyen – the national intangible cultural heritage; the Then singing of the Tay-Nung ethnic group; the dance with conical hats and the performance of Vietnamese traditional ao dai.

Besides, on the opening day of the festival, there were many exciting and lively performances by other Vietnamese – Japanese delegations. Notably, the Yosakoi dance team Soran, or a Japanese-style wedding re-enactment performed by students of Sanko Gakuen Sapporo Bridal & Hotel Tourism College, helped festival attendee better understand traditional wedding customs of the Japanese people and the typical meanings of the Kimono costume.

Vietnam Festival in Sapporo 2022 Officially Kicked Off
Locals try Quang Ninh’s products at the 2022 Vietnam Festival in Sapporo. Source: baomoiday.net

The northern province of Quang Ninh also participated in a booth to introduce its typical products. Especially through this festival, Quang Ninh wants to introduce to the people of Hokkaido province in particular and to the Japanese people in general about the culture, people, natural landscape and tourist destinations in Quang Ninh.

In 2023, the Hokkaido Festival will be hosted in Quang Ninh province.

Hannah Nguyen