Vietnam-Japan Cultural Exchange Days open in Hoi An

The 7th “Vietnam-Japan Cultural Exchange Days” festival opened in Hoi An, in the central province of Quang Nam on August 14.

Attending the opening ceremony were Vice State President Nguyen Thi Doan, Japan’s Senator Matsuda Iwao and Ambassador to Vietnam Sakaba Mitsuo.

The three-day festival, which takes place o­n the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Hoi An Ancient Town being recognised as a world cultural heritage site and the town receiving a certificate recognising the Cham Islands as a World Biosphere Reserve, includes various programmes spotlighting the culture of Japan and Vietnam.

According to Japanese Ambassador Sakaba Mitsuo, during the festival, visitors will have a chance to see the “Japanese People’s Street”, which existed in Hoi An 400 years ago.

After the town was recognised as a world cultural heritage site in 1999, many Japanese experts arrived here to help preserve it, he said, adding that this was evidence of the deep relationship between Vietnam and Japan over the past 400 years.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Thanh Son affirmed that Japanese traders who came to Vietnam during the early 16th century laid the foundation for present day Vietnam-Japan exchange activities.

The friendship and cooperation between the two nations have continuously developed over years, especially in politics, economics, culture and education, towards a “strategic partnership”.

To honour traditional cultural values, a Vietnamese cultural space was recreated featuring 30 houses with typical designs of Dong Son (Thanh Hoa province), Gong (Central Highlands provinces) as well as My Son and Hoi An characteristics.

The organising board invited Prof. Tran Van Khe and Prof. Hoang Chuong to talk about the development of folk music.

Apart from familiar activities, such as the Japanese tea ceremony, taking photos in the Yukata costume, there are three troupes from Japan with 300 artists who will, for the first time, take part in a drumming performance. Pianist Highuchi Ayuko will also play the piano.

A seminar “Hoi An-10 years of being a World Cultural Heritage Site” will be held to review Vietnam ’s activities and achievements in preserving and upholding the cultural values of the ancient town which bears the imprint of Japanese culture.

On the occasion, Vice State President Nguyen Thi Doan handed over a certificate from UNESCO recognising Cham Islands as a World Biosphere Reserve to leaders of Quang Nam province and Hoi An town.