Bình Thuận to popularise, preserve ethnic minority music and dance

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Chăm people in Bình Thuận Province perform a folk dance while celebrating the Ka Tê Festival. VNA/VNS Photo by Nguyễn Thanh

HCM CITY — The south-central coastal province of Bình Thuận has launched a long-term project (until 2030) to preserve and promote music and dances of ethnic minority communities.

The provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism said the project will promote specific values of ethnic minority culture among the public, and raise awareness and a sense of responsibility for protecting and preserving national traditions.

The department will compile a repertoire of songs, music and dance traditionally performed by ethnic minority communities in the province by 2025.

It will also focus on turning folk songs, dance and music into the province’s signature tourism products in order to enhance socio-economic development in ethnic minority areas.

Furthermore, the department will train cultural officers, teachers and folk artists to manage and promote traditional performing arts.

In the 2026-30 period, agencies will prepare dossiers for consideration and conferment of “People’s Artists” and “Meritorious Artist” titles for artisans from ethnic minority communities.

The department will host student exchanges and performances to introduce the songs, music and dances of ethnic minority communities so that young generations can learn and understand the nation’s diverse cultural traditions and their values.

More than 30 ethnic minority communities reside in Bình Thuận now, including the Chăm people with a population of 40,000.

In recent years, the province has restored and turned many traditional festivals of the ethnic minority communities into specific tourism products, attracting both local and international tourists.

The work has contributed to preserving and promoting ethnic minority culture, developing tourism and improving living standards of locals, especially the minority communities.

Among the province’s most attractive cultural offerings are the Ka Tê and Ramưwan Festivals of the Chăm people, celebrated in Phan Thiết City and Bắc Bình District.

Besides these, the Nghinh Ông Festival, which showcases fishermen’s respect for and devotion to the whale deity, who they pray to for protection and a bumper catch, has captured the imagination of visitors in recent years.

In the first five months of 2022, the province welcomed nearly 1.89 million visitors including 19,900 foreign tourists, a year-on-year increase of 17 per cent, while the tourism sector earned VNĐ3.6 trillion (US$155 million).

Bình Thuận plans to achieve tourism growth of 18-20 per cent a year from now through 2025 and for the sector to contribute 10-11 per cent of its gross domestic product. — VNS

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