16:15 | 04/06/2018 Society
(VEN) - The ao dai, Vietnamese for “long dress”, is one of the best-known traditional garments of southeastern Asia, and its graceful lines are a source of national pride. Visitors to Hue, Vietnam’s former dynastic capital, can get a close look at this cultural icon in motion.
The “Hue Ao Dai Show - Pride of the Vietnamese Tradition” was launched by the Vkstar Joint Stock Company in 2016 and has become a unique tourism product.
The show is held at 8pm every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. Its content varies from month to month, displaying various ao dai collections created by different designers. The show also enables interactions between the artists and audience, and offers Hue’s traditional products for sale. The show attracts mostly foreign tourists.
The show tells a story about the tight-fitting silk tunic worn over trousers, images of which first appeared on Dong Son bronze drums and other artifacts dating back thousands of years. Nowadays, Vietnamese women wear the garment on formal occasions, such as a national holiday or traditional festival.
Over decades, famous Vietnamese designers have created new ao dai designs, maintaining the quintessence of tradition while at the same time adding new, creative details and fabrics. Not only introducing the traditional clothe to honor the beauty of Vietnamese women, the show also provides a tourism product that helps the city attract more visitors at night.
Conserving national culture
Vkstar General Director Nguyen Lan Vy is also the general director of Hue Ao dai Show. She recently attended a show of this kind, wearing a sapphire-blue ao dai and cutting a graceful and elegant figure. She smiled happily at the end of the show when the audience applauded.
Born in Hue, Vy went to New Zealand at the age of 20 to attend courses in business, theatre directing and event management. She came back to Vietnam when she was nearly 40 years old. Finding that Hue still lacked tourism products to attract visitors at night, she decided to establish a company specializing in organizing events with ao dai performances.
“Hue Ao dai Show - Pride of the Vietnamese Tradition” was launched shortly after. The show has attracted the participation of famous ao dai designers nationwide. Travel firms and hotels are also interested in the show and arrange for their customers to attend. The show has generated jobs and incomes for more than 200 students who participate as performers.
Vy has made constant efforts to improve the show. For her efforts, she was awarded the “Talented Businesswoman” title at a Top 100 Business Style Award 2017 ceremony. She was the only woman among the top 10 businesspeople honored at the event and the first woman in Hue to receive this distinguished award.
Nguyen Lan Vy intends to bring “Hue Ao Dai Show - Pride of the Vietnamese Tradition” to major cities worldwide to introduce Vietnam’s traditional fashion and Hue’s cultural traditions to international audiences.