Hotline/WhatsApp: (+84) 936 154 283
Hotline/WhatsApp: (+84) 936 154 283

Water puppetry – A Vietnam cultural specialty

Vietnam water puppetry-A culture specialty

Water puppetry is a traditional folk art form bearing the mark of wet rice agricultural civilization, associated with the culture of the Red River Delta of Vietnam. Not simply controlling puppets on the water, this type is a combination of singing, dancing, music, singing, acting, clowning with sound effects, light, smoke, orchestra,… . all create a unique, lively, realistic and emotional puppet show.

According to records on the Sung Thien Dien Linh tower stele in 1121, during the Ly Dynasty, water puppetry was popular in Vietnam. Looking back on a long period of existence and development, water puppetry has been increasingly improved, invested and refined to live up to its title: a unique form of traditional Vietnamese theater. Over many generations, the art of water puppetry has always been the crystallization of the talent, ingenuity and intelligence of the artisan. In recent years, puppet theater has received more investment, especially in the effects stage.

Water Puppetry

It is no coincidence that water puppetry has become a unique folk culture of the Vietnamese people. The interesting thing about this art form is clearly shown right from the name “Water Puppet Show” – using water as the stage to perform. Water surfaces, lakes, and ponds are both stages, backdrops, and supporting characters for puppets performing under the skillful control of artisans. If the upper part is the stage, the underwater part is the system of machines, poles, and wires connected to the game room.

The water puppet stage is an empty space in front of the game room, often equipped with flags, fans, elephants, parasols, gates, votives, etc. The puppets are often made of sycamore wood because of its lightweight properties, which help the puppets float on the water. The process of chiseling, carving, sharpening, polishing and decorating is all focused on by the artisan because each puppet – character has its own unique personality.

According to statistics, there are about 30 traditional performances and hundreds of modern performances saved in the Vietnamese water puppetry treasury. The content of the performances often revolves around folk tales and the daily lives of farmers such as harrowing, planting, duck herding, wrestling, boat racing, swimming, rowing the Thi Mau opera to the pagoda… Today, topics in water puppetry are exploited more richly and expanded, such as talking about production, fighting, etc., and are invested elaborately and majestically with the presence of artists. modern stage techniques.

Water Puppetry

A complete water puppet show is a combination of many artists, artists who create plays, artists who make puppets, artists who operate puppets, and artists who sing. No matter the position, it requires the skills, enthusiasm, passion, and consensus of each individual in the team.

Besides, sound in water puppetry also plays an important role: lyrics, drums, fireworks, drums, horns, flag-opening fireworks, etc. contribute to making the puppet show more realistic. more lively.

Water puppetry, a folk art form unique to Vietnam, is a cultural specialty that has existed over thousands of years of history that you must definitely enjoy when coming to Hanoi.
💥 Suggested activities for a day:

✅ Tour guide will pick you up at your hotel
✅ Walk around Hoan Kiem Lake, visit Ngoc Son Temple
✅ Enjoy original egg coffee
✅ Explore the ancient area dating back to the French period
✅ Visit the famous train street
✅ Visit the Temple of Literature
✅ Experience exploring Hanoi by cyclo
✅ VAT Tax & Service charges
✅ Travel insurance and other included services


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