Forum Home Forum Home > Vietnamese Ethnic Groups > The Viet or Kinh
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed: Vietnamese Water Puppet
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

Vietnamese Water Puppet

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
admingroup View Drop Down
Admin
Admin
Avatar
ad

Joined: 14 October 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 440
Post Options Post Options   Quote admingroup Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Vietnamese Water Puppet
    Posted: 26 August 2011 at 12:04

We do not know whether water puppets appear in other countries or whether they remain only in Viet Nam, but we do know that they continue to spread and gain intimacy with their audiences. If you want to see puppets in their true environment, you must watch them in the cradle whether they began – in the open air of a village in Viet Nam northern Red River Delta.

The village had organized the performance to celebrate spring. The puppeteers were not professionals but, instead, farmers from a village puppetry guild. They had practiced with puppets they’d carved. Their characters were men, women and children, the old and the young... The performers used stories from Vietnamese traditional theater and tales of national heroes who have resisted invaders. Their characters cultivated rice, caught fish, and tended ducks. Everyone laughed when a fox puppet nabbed a duck and when uncle Teu (a puppet serving as master of ceremonies) made a joke.

Vietnamese water puppets probably began as a ceremony to pray for water to nourish the rice crop. For that reason, the mythical dragon (a positive image in Vietnamese culture) is a particularly strong character. The Red River Delta is hot, humid and filled with rivers. Every village has a pond or lake that can serve as a water-puppet theater. The weather must be warm since the performers stand in waist-deep water for hours. A theatrical set, which is often a village temple, separates the audience from the performers who works from behind a bamboo curtain. They manipulate their puppets at the far end of the bamboo pole about two meters long and must keep the pole under the water. The heavy wooden puppets held so far from the puppeteers require that performers be very strong.

During French colonialism, urban Vietnamese did not know about water puppets because only farmers perform such puppetry and only for their own neighbors. As the result, water-puppet scenes take place in rural settings with rice paddies, fishponds, bamboo thickets, banyan trees, wells and of course the village temple. The scenes include cultivating with water buffalo, buffalo fights, irrigating, harvesting and winnowing rice; boat races; kids swimming and racing and performing water acrobatics; cavorting fish and frogs; dancing turtles and phoenixes; and dragons spewing smoke.

The casts of puppet characters also includes farmers and village workers such sawyers, blacksmiths, and carpenters. All settings are within the village. The only connection to the outside is a procession for a villager who returns from successfully completing the competitive mandarin exams.

Farmers in the Red River Delta traditionally make their living from wet-rice cultivation. They must work hard in the rice paddies and continually fight against floods. Since farmers prize their intimacy with earth and water, their water puppets praise the labor, perseverance, and optimism of farming life in both the family and the village. Double meaning and satire illuminate the struggle between good and evil, with evil resulting in its own lesions.

Water puppets incorporate Vietnamese animism as well as Buddhism, Taoism and especially Confucianism. Spectators sitting amidst rice paddies as they watch the water puppets soon sense how Vietnamese farmers live together with spirits in an atmosphere of pantheism.




cultures
Back to Top
Sponsored Links
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down



This page was generated in 0.283 seconds.

Northern Vietnam
Central Vietnam
South Vietnam
Northern Vietnam
Central Vietnam
South Vietnam
About the ethnic culture
Habits VIETNAM
Heritage VIETNAM
Vietnamese ethnic groups
Ca tru
Cheo Opera
Tuong or Hat Boi
Cai Luong (renovated opera)
Quan Ho Bac Ninh
Vietnamese Lullaby Songs
Hat van
Hat Xam
Hat Then
Xoan Singing
Dan Nguyet - Two-String Guitar
Two-string fiddle (Dan Nhi)
Dan Ty Ba Four-string guitar
16-string zither (Dan Tranh)
Dan Tam Three-string Lute
Bamboo Flute (Sao truc)
T'rung
Dan Tam Thap Luc
Trong Com - Rice Drum
Dan K'Ni
Dan Day
H'mong pen pipe
Cong Chieng
Gong Zither
The Klong put
Lithophone
The Nung Ethnic Group
Se Dang Ethnic Group
San Diu Ethnic Group
The Hoa Ethnic Group in Vietnam
The Viet or Kinh
Hmong Ethnic Group
The Cham
The Dao
The Thai Ethnic Group
The Bahnar
The Bo Y Ethnic Group
The Ede Ethnic Group
The Bru - Van Kieu Ethnic Group
The Brau Ethnic Group
The Colao Ethnic Group
The Coho Ethnic Group
The San Chay Ethnic Group
The Tay Ethnic Group
Beautiful images of Vietnam

Bao Hiem truoc tuyen