Culture Culture

07/01/2020 - 07:41

Hue City: Towards a "Green" Festival

The 11th Hue Festival, with its theme “Cultural Heritage with Integration and Development - Hue: Always New ” is set to take place from April 1 to 6, 2020.

Upon the approach of this outstanding event, which marks the 20-year of establishment and development of the first festival of culture, art, and tourism at national and international levels of the country, Thua Thien Hue Newspaper would like to have an interview with Mr. Phan Ngoc Tho, Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee, Head of the Organizing Committee of Hue Festival 2020 (FOC).

Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee Phan Ngoc Tho. Photo: THAI BINH

Could you reveal some fascinating highlights of Hue Festival 2020?

Hue Festival 2020 will mark the 20-year voyage since the first festival was held. Bearing the theme “Cultural Heritage with Integration and Development - Hue: Always  New ”, Hue Festival 2020 continues to introduce and promote the unique values ​​of Vietnamese culture and Hue culture; it is also the place for various cultures around the globe to showcase and exchange.

Basically, Hue Festival 2020 is set to ensure the three goals: professionalism, artistic value and public orientation. Built on the framework that has created the brand name for the 10 previous Hue festivals, such as the Grand Opening Ceremony, Royal Culture and Civilization, Ao Dai Fashion Show, Trinh Cong Son’s Music Concert, Street Parades, Cuisine-fest: “Hue – Capital of Gastronomy” or Kite Festival.

All of them are to be presented with renewed content and improved quality, aiming at bringing art closer to the audience and making the people the actual subject of the festival.

In terms of scale, based on the program structure, the FOC had selected and sent invitations to 20 countries of extensive history, profound culture, and developed arts who have been the traditional partners of Hue Festival. This number also carries a significance considering the 20th anniversary celebration of the establishment and development of Hue Festival.

The FOC has also employed a more active method of selection when making specific proposals about the desired art troupes or type to the partners, hence the programs of high-quality levels could be selected.

The number of programs is also put under control. Ineffective response programs are to be reduced while street art activities are to be leveled up to attract larger participation of domestic and foreign tourists and visitors.

The date of the festival this year is altered. Instead of being held on the occasion of April 30 and May 1, the event will be held earlier in early April 2020. What is this change for?

When selecting the date for the event, in addition to considering the weather, we must also calculate to match the event date with a certain long holiday in order to better meet the needs of the audience. In the two recent festivals, the time of the event was tied to the holiday of April 30 and May 1. A benefit of this timing is that the festival would have no impact on the working and/or learning activities of local officials, civil servants, and students.

That time is also the season of domestic tourists, thus visitors to Hue during the holiday will also have a special opportunity to enjoy the festival's arts programs. Thanks to that, the local cultural beauty and strengths could be better advertised and reach out to a larger number of visitors.

However, that is also the time when hotels are often overloaded, failing to meet the visitors’ accommodation needs; and, the organization and logistics of the festival often meet with considerable difficulties.

Therefore, the FOC decided to time the festival this year nearly 1 month earlier (April 1 to 6, 2020) and match it up with the holiday of the Death Anniversary of the Hung Kings. This way, we believe that organizational barriers will be lifted off while better services would be delivered to the visitors.

Street parades have always been an attraction to the people and tourists at Hue festivals. Photo: DUC QUANG

Another difference of this festival is that instead of using merely posters, the identity images (the four mascots) will be utilized. Could you give us some details about this?

Yes, it is a new element of this festival. In the previous ones, the FOC used only one design as the event’s recognition image. This time, the identity image, which features graphics and designs stylized from the four sacred animals in royal Hue fine art and categorized into four thematic clusters: a heritage Hue (Dragon), a spiritual Hue (Turtle), a poetic and modern Hue (Phoenix), and a unique Hue Festival (Unicorn), will be introduced in order to fully convey the extraordinary aspects of Hue culture, functioning as a lively and effective mean of promotion, matching the multi-dimensional communication approach that Hue Festival 2020 adopts.

The diversified identity systems will offer a new perspective and optimize the image set’s applicability, laying the foundation for the communications team of Hue Festival 2020 to employ 360-degree integrated communication mode, which can be easily used in both offline and online digital communication media, from mainstream channels to social media. Suitable graphic applications and visual marketing would create a vivid and innovative visual environment compared to that of the previous festivals.

You once said Hue Festival 2020 will be a "Green Festival", can you elaborate more on this important target?

Our consistent view is that economic development must go hand in hand with environmental protection. Economy, society, and environment are the three pillars of sustainable development – the backbone of the development process. Responding to the Prime Minister’s call in evoking the whole society to join hands to fight plastic waste, a "Green Festival where environment is well protected and no disposable plastic products is used" is what Hue Festival 2020 sets to target to further promote the awareness and action of the community following the movements that Hue has actively implemented, such as "Green Sunday", "Against Plastic Waste". Voluntary and responding activities of the festival will focus on the protection and cleaning of the environment.

This serves as a message that Hue wants to convey to its international friends, affirming the value of Hue as well as attracting support for Hue in building and developing a smart city in the future – a green, clean, and bright one.

Thank you very much!

By Duc Quang