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Hải Phòng will host the 11th Red Flamboyant Festival to promote the cultural and historical heritage values of the city.

A significant socio-cultural and political event held annually in May in the northern port city, dubbed as “The City of Red Flamboyant”, the festival aims to build up its reputation both domestically and internationally. It also seeks to promote diversification and improve the quality of tourism products.

The festival will open tonight (May 1) with the ceremony to receive the UNESCO recognition of Hạ Long Bay - Cát Bà Archipelago as the World Natural Heritage Site.

According to the Deputy Chairman of Hải Phòng City People's Committee Lê Khắc Nam, the Cát Bà Archipelago in Hải Phòng City and the Hạ Long Bay (in neighbouring province of Quảng Ninh) is Việt Nam's first inter-provincial site listed by the UNESCO as the World Heritage Site.

Eight years after submitting the application for recognition, the site was officially added to the World Heritage List.

Following the UNESCO-titled receiving ceremony, a captivating and energetic art and music concert will take place on May 11. A highlight of the 11th Red Flamboyant Festival and complied with the festival theme Hải Phòng – Bừng Sáng Miền Di Sản (Hải Phòng – The Heritage Region Bright Ups), the event is the largest-scale art event ever held in Hải Phòng.

Taking place at the square in front of the newly-built Hải Phòng’s Centre of Politics and Administration in the North Cấm River new urban area in Thủy Nguyên District, the event is expected to attract 18,000 people.

Its stage has been designed with the inspiration from the theme of the blooming red flamboyancy. Using cutting-edge lighting and augmented reality technologies, the concert will convey the image of a port city with full of vitality and has been gaining significant achievements in its building and developing process.

Famous singers Phạm Thu Hà, Khánh Hòa, and Thu Phương, who were born in Hải Phòng, will perform Thành Phố Hoa Phượng Đỏ (The Red Flamboyant City) – a popular melody about Hải Phòng.

Celebrity artists including diva Thanh Lam, divo Tùng Dương, singers Phương Linh, Hòa Minzy and Erik, together with 1,000 performers, will take part in the concert, which will be live on VTV1.

Following the performance, a brilliant and spectacular high-altitude firework display will shine on the skyline of the port city.

Agenda showcases cultural activities

According to director of Hải Phòng City’s Department of Culture and Sports Trần Thị Hoàng Mai, the festival will also feature an agenda full of activities presenting the distinctive and unique features of Hải Phòng’s culture, history and tourism.

“Hải Phòng has a rich historical and cultural heritage, including over 550 tangible and intangible cultural heritages that have been classified. Alongside the Cát Bà Archipelagoes World Natural Heritage site, we also have 11 national intangible cultural heritages, two Special National Monuments, 119 National Monuments, and 21 national treasures,” Mai said.

The festival will include the exhibition Hải Phòng – The Heritage Region Bright Ups at the new Centre of Politics and Administration to introduce about its history and development of the city.

Another exhibition displaying national treasure objects will open to public at the Hải Phòng Museum. Demonstrations of the UNESCO-recognised intangible cultural heritage of Hải Phòng, including ca trù (ceremonial singing) and the practice of Mother Goddess worshiping, will be organised at the Hải Phòng Opera Square.

The Hàng Kênh Communal House – a national architectural and artistic monument will host the “Cultural Space of Ancient Hải Phòng Communal House”.

The agenda also include festivals dedicating to the art of puppetry and the UNESCO-recognised đờn ca tài tử (Southern amateur music), drawing the participation of several art troupes across the country.

Martial arts performance, traditional sport games, fashion shows of áo dài (long traditional dress), will also presented during the Red Flamboyant Festival.

A contest for paintings for 70th celebration of Hải Phòng Liberation (13/05/1955 – 13/05/2025) will be launched during the Red Flamboyant Festival.

During May 10 to 13, powered paragliding performances will be held in Tân Dương and Thuỷ Nguyên communes.

Lưu Hoàng Điệp, representative of the S9 Travel Company in Hải Phòng, said that large-scale festivals, such as the Red Flamboyant Festival, have a significant appeal to tourists and a positive impact on tourism.

In 2024, Hải Phòng targets to receive approximately 9.1 million tourists, including over one million international visitors. — VNS