The nomination paper for Xoan singing to be recognised as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity must be submitted to UNESCO before March 31.
The Prime Minister assigned the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Viet Nam National Commission for UNESCO to prepare all necessary paperwork for the nomination.
Xoan singing originates in northern Phu Tho province and is performed in communal halls during spring festivals. For this reason, it is also called “hat cua dinh” (singing in front of the communal house).
It is believed to date back to the time of the Hung kings (2890 BC to 250 BC).
It is a form of entertainment, but it also honours the Hung kings, the founders of the nation, and village guardian spirits; appeals for good health, weather and harvests; and depicts daily life in rural areas.
The singing is accompanied by dancing and musical instruments, such as clappers and drums.
Four Xoan guilds still exist: An Thai, Phu Duc, Kim Doi and Thet in Kim Duc and Phuong Lau communes of Phu Tho province.