The festival, the 10th edition of its kind, is themed “Cultural heritage with integration and development – Hue one destination, five world heritages”, according to Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Dung.
The French rock band Lysistrata and the Berywam beatbox/acapella team are expected to perform at the event while a cartoon exhibition of the Nouvelle Aquitaine region is hoped to amuse visitors.
The Hue Festival, previously known as the France-Viet Nam art festival, was first held in 2000 by the French Embassy in Viet Nam and the ancient city of Hue, said Dung, who is also head of the festival organising committee.
The event featured Vietnamese culture and French contemporary art. It looked to expand cultural exchanges between the two countries in tandem with tourism development, he added.
The first Hue Festival attracted more than 30 art troupes from Viet Nam and France with some 1,000 professional and amateur artists as well as 410,000 visitors, including 6,000 foreigners.
Most recently, at the Hue Festival 2016, the L’Homme Debout art troupe from the Poitou Charentes region of France joined Vietnamese artists to create an art performance called Venus.
In addition to boosting cooperation at the Hue Festival, the two countries have stepped up collaboration in economy. The Poitou Charentes region has sponsored more than 11 billion VND (483,450 USD) to help Thua Thien-Hue carry out an ecotourism project, Dung revealed.
The French region also funded 500 million VND to build houses at Thuong Nhat commune in the mountainous district of Nam Dong to serve accommodation for tourists.
Apart from France, the Hue Festival 2018 is expected to draw 21 international art troupes from the Republic of Korea, the UK, Mongolia, Japan, Thailand, Russia, Belgium and China.
A wide range of activities will be held as part of the event including a Buddhism cultural programme, a national festival of “Hat Van” or “Chau Van” (a traditional art form that combines singing and dancing), a music show featuring songs of late musician Trinh Cong Son, a scientific festival, an international trade fair, a cuisine fair and a poem festival.
Hue, which was the imperial capital of Viet Nam for hundreds of years, is home to five heritages recognised by UNESCO, namely the Hue ancient citadel relic complex – a World Cultural Heritage site; Nha Nhac (Hue royal court music)- an intangible cultural heritage item; Nguyen Dynasty’s wood blocks – a documentary heritage item; Nguyen Dynasty’s Chau ban (royal administrative documents) – part of the Asia-Pacific Register of UNESCO’s Memory of the World Programme; and literature on Hue royal architecture – a documentary heritage.