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4,000-year-old bones discovered in Ha Tinh

4,000-year-old bones discovered in Ha Tinh; Jennifer Pham selected to emcee Miss Vietnam finale; New series spotlights southern singing tradition; Over 20 countries attend int’l food festival in HCM City; Prominent film director publishes books

4,000-year-old bones discovered in Ha Tinh

Archaeologists have uncovered stone implements, pottery and human and animal bones and teeth, including rhinoceros feet, dating back four millennia in the central province of Ha Tinh, in a find hailed as giving new insights into Vietnam's post-stone-age culture.

The team from Ha Tinh Museum undertook the dig from November 21 to December 1 and found, at a depth of two metres, an archaeological trove that included a human skeleton dated as being 4,000 years old. The bones showed signs of having been burned.

Archaeologists have been excavating the Thach Lac site for many years and have recovered numerous items, including a stone axe, ceramic jewellery, and animal bones. In 2004, they found an ancient tomb.

Nguyen Tri Son, head of Ha Tinh Museum, said excavation would continue. "I'm sure more items will be found, and they will tell us more about our post-stone age," he said.

Jennifer Pham selected to emcee Miss Vietnam finale

The head of the Miss Vietnam organization revealed on December 4 at a press conference that Jennifer Pham has been selected to host the final night of the 2014 Miss Vietnam pageant.

It’s a pleasure to announce that Ms Pham will once again delight audiences at the final night of the 2014 Miss Vietnam pageant set for December 6 at the upscale Vinpearl Phu Quoc resort at emerald island.

Ms Pham achieved fame by winning many beauty pageant titles. She was crowned Miss Vietnam USA runner-up 2004, Vietnamese American Top Model 2005, Miss Vietnam Southern California 2006 and Miss Asia USA 2006. She has been involved in numerous charitable activities throughout the US and Asian countries.

New series spotlights southern singing tradition

A new series on SCTV7 channel celebrates the first anniversary of UNESCO's recognition of don ca tai tu (southern amateur singing) as intangible cultural heritage.

Since long ago, don ca tai tu has been an integral part of the cultural and spiritual life of people living in the south.

The 20-episode series depicts the life and career of musician Cao Van Lau, who wrote one of the genre's most popular songs, Da Co Hoai Lang (Night Drum Beat Causes Longing for Absent Husband).

Cai luong (reformed opera) actor Vo Minh Lam plays the musician in the series, directed by Xuan Phuoc.

Over 20 countries attend int’l food festival in HCM City

More than 60 restaurants and hotels from over 20 countries and territories are showcasing their special dishes at an international food festival which opened in Ho Chi Minh City on December 4.

During the festival, the ninth of its kind, visitors can understand more about the culinary culture of many countries around the world with their plentiful and unique dishes displayed in nearly 100 booths.

The event also features a wide range of attractive activities such as Thai muay performances and programmes to launch new records on traditional Vietnamese pastry and sculptural works on world cultural heritages in Vietnam.

I n addition, visitors have a chance to enjoy over 60 kinds of pastry made by 100 renowned cooks right at the festival.

Addressing the opening ceremony, Vice Chairwoman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Thi Hong said that the event is expected to preserve and promote the culinary culture of Vietnam and other countries in the world.

It will run until December 7.-

Prominent film director publishes books

Director and author Viet Linh will introduce her new books at talk shows in HCM and Ha Noi.

Entitled O Day Co Nang (There's Sun Here) and Nam Phut Voi Ga Xep (Five Minutes with Railway Station), the books were published by Tre (Young) Publishing House.

The talk shows will be held at Saturday Coffee and Lotus University in HCM City tomorrow and December 20.

In Ha Noi, the event will take place at 6pm on December 10 at Heritage Space.

Viet Linh is a prominent director of Vietnamese cinema and the south's first female director.

Her first film, Phien Toa Can Chanh An (The Court), focused on social problems and created a very strong impression when it was released in 1987. Linh has since directed dozens of serious dramas, including Me Thao Thoi Vang Bong (Glorious Time in Me Thao Village) and Chung Cu (Living Quarter), which won prizes at local and international film festivals.

HCM City getting to be a tourism Mecca

More than 60 world renowned chefs, restaurateurs and caterers from the food industry gathered December 4 for opening day of a four-day culinary event at the End-of-the-Year festival organized by the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.

The exciting event themed "Taste of the world" pooled together food-industry experts from around the world offering visitors the opportunity to experience first-hand the latest trends and practices that shape the global dining landscape and taste a wide array of delectable dishes.

Apart from attractive dishes, visitors also had the opportunity to partake in a diverse array of cultural and sports activities such as a Muay Thai tournament and examine sculptures of Vietnamese world cultural heritage sites carved on the surface of fruit and vegetables.

Most especially, visitors enjoyed more than 60 strangely beautiful cakes made by 100 distinctive bakers and bakeries specifically for the occasion.

Speaking at  the opening ceremony, Nguyen Thi Hong, Vice President of HCM City’s People’s Committee emphasised the city’s tourism sector has become a  spearhead of the industry which has greatly contributed to the economic growth of the city.

The event aimed to help elevate the image of HCM city as a major culinary centre of the world and the image of Vietnam as a tourist Mecca.

Thai cultural fest to kick off in Hanoi

The Royal Thai Embassy will organize a cultural festival to be held December 6 from 3pm until 10pm at the Reunification Park in Hanoi.

The festival will include a variety of Thai performances including dance, martial arts and handicrafts. There will also be live presentations of Thai handicrafts, such as puppet making, ceramic painting, and silk weaving.

All the proceeds collected from event will be donated to the National Fund for Vietnamese Children.

The event aims to promote Thailand’s art and cultural uniqueness as well as to strengthen the bonds of friendship between the two nations.   

Volunteers participate in Help Portrait event

About 1,600 volunteers and photographers will take part in a non-profit event launched by Help Portrait Vietnam to take photos for disadvantaged people.

The festival will take place from 7am to 5pm at 65 spots in 13 cities and provinces, including hospitals and social assistance centres.

The festival first took place in 2010 in HCM City. Since then, it has expanded nationwide. Last year, over 4,500 images were developed.

Ancient citadel in Bien Hoa gets renovation

Renovation on Bien Hoa Ancient Citadel in Quang Vinh Ward, Bien Hoa City in the southern province of Dong Nai began on Wednesday.

The VND14 billion (US$650,000) project, implemented by Central Fine Arts Company over 36 months, aims to give the citadel a comprehensive upgrade.

The citadel is historically significant for its role in the early southward thrust by the central-based Nguyen Dynasty 300 years ago and the French and American wars in the 20th century.

Originally built of earth in the 14-15th century, it was rebuilt with bricks in 1837. The 10,816sq.m citadel has two large buildings and two blockhouses left inside its outer walls.

Vietnam National Drama Theater hits city stage

A drama titled Lau dai cat (The sandy castle) will be performed by the Vietnam National Drama Theater at Ho Chi Minh City Opera House on December 17.

The play has achieved success in the northern stage during this year, with 60 perfromances drawing a total audience of more than 3,000.

Vietnam National Drama Theater in Hanoi has returned to Ho Chi Minh City after a 10-year absence.

The drama will continue to be performed at Cong Nhan (Worker) Theater from December 18-24.

In October, the Vietnam National Drama Theater won an excellent prize at the 2nd ASEAN-China Theatre and Drama Festival, which ended in Nanning, China . The theater received the award for the children stage work entitled Chuyen Chang Dung Sy (The Story of A Valiant Man) which adapted by veteran director Anh Tu from the popular epic Dam San of the E De ethnic group in the Central Highlands.

Musical theater “Sand Castle” to be performed in HCMC

Eminent artist Anh Tu, deputy director of the Vietnam National Drama Theater said on December 3 that from December 17 to 24 the Vietnam National Drama Theatre (VNDT) will meet again HCMC’s audiences.

Accordingly, VNDT will introduce the play named Lau dai cat (sand castle) of Vietnamese composers Nguyen Dang Chuong, Anh Tu and performed by artists Le Ngoc, Mai Nguyen, Danh Nhan, Minh Hieu, Nguyen Huong, Ta Minh, Thu Huong…

This play was first staged in the northern provinces in early 2014 and attracted over 3,000 Vietnamese viewers.

“Sand castle” (photo) will be on HCMC’s stages at 20:00 on December 17 at HCMC Opera House and on December 24 at Cong Nhan Theater.

Festivals, shopping program launched in HCMC

The 2014 Ho Chi Minh City Tourism and Shopping Program was yesterday launched in Ho Chi Minh City in Park Sep 23 in District 1 by the Department of Tourism and the Department of Industry and Trade.

The month-long program is scheduled to run at Sep 23 Park in the downtown area in order to attract tourists and promote tourism and shopping demand in the year-end. Tourists and local inhabitants will get discount from 10-50 percent and gifts when buying goods from booths in the park.

The program has received good response of almost 500 local shopping malls, hotels, and restaurants with over 1,000 stalls offering numerous culinary and entertainment delights.

Another highlight, “Mon Ngon Cac Nuoc” (Countries’ Delicacies) Cuisine Fest, also opened at Sep 23 Park on the day.

This year’s fest, which has grown into many local and international tourists’ favorite year-end rendezvous in the past several years, will feature the culinary delights of 60 hotels and restaurants from 20 countries and territories.

The festive will take place until December 7.

Exhibition highlighting early 20th century Vietnam opens

A photo exhibition, entitled ‘Vietnam Insight - Vietnam in the early 20th century through photos of École Française d'Extrême-Orient (EFEO – French School of Asian Studies)’ opened at Vietnam National Museum of History in Hanoi on December 3.

Nearly 60 photos, featuring activities in Vietnam people’s daily lives, the relationship between human beings and the natural environment, worship and other religious rituals, are being showcased at the exhibition.

The photos are divided into four parts, including archaeology, building museums, life in Vietnam in the early 20th century and Nam Giao Worship Ritual ceremony.

Additionally, the Vietnam National Museum of History is displaying 50 artifacts under Hoa Binh, Bac Son, Dong Son, Sa Huynh, Oc Eo and Champa culture, which are discovered by scientists of the EFEO.

The exhibition offers a clear insight into Vietnam in the last century, especially its architecture, landscape, people and daily life.

The exhibition will run until March 2015.

Ethnic minorities’ literature and arts are indispensable part of Vietnam’s culture

The development of literature and arts from ethnic minority groups, an indispensable part of Vietnam’s literature and arts, reflect the unity of diversity in Vietnam’s culture.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam made the statement at the fifth congress of the Literature and Arts Association of Ethnic Minority Groups for the 2014 – 2019 tenure in Hanoi on December 2.

He also reaffirmed that the Party and State pursue consistent policies on developing mountainous regions and living areas of ethnic minority groups.

He expressed his hope that the association would make further contributions to realising Party and State guidelines and policies on ethnicity, improving the spiritual life of ethnic minorities groups, and consolidating the national great unity bloc.

He urged the association to discover and nurture writers and artists from ethnic minorities while preserving and upholding cultural heritages of the groups.

The congress attracted the participation of over 500 members from 48 cities and provinces across the country.

The congress appointed a 21-member executive committee for the new term, with Nong Quoc Binh reelected as Chairman.

Saigon Comic Con slated for Sunday

Saigon Comic Con (SCC), a Vietnamese version of world renowned cartoon/anime/game expo Comic Con, will be held for the first time at Phu Tho Indoor Stadium in HCMC’s District 11 at 10 a.m. on Sunday.

The festival which originated from the U.S since the 70s will be a venue for local youth to admire some popular cartoon characters. There are lots of activities at this year’s SCC, including cosplay (dressing like cartoon characters Sailor Moon, Naruto, Maleficent, Superman, and Batman), exhibitions on new cartoons, games and related products such as clothes and accessories.

Visitors to the event can also admire many cartoon characters made from clay and polymer and they can join in numerous free workshops on making Hell Boy statues from polymer clay. Dancers from “So You Think You Can Dance” reality show will compete at the festival. Professional electronic sports players will also be there to exchange with audiences.

Apart from the U.S., Comic Con has been held in numerous Asian countries like Thailand, Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan.

Tickets for adults are priced at VND180,000 per person while children under 1.3 meters will get free entrance. For further information, contact

0978 351 010.



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