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Art project on Vietnamese royal costumes launched

Theatre artists are taking part in a special project that replicates traditional Vietnamese clothes worn by royalty of various dynasties.

The project, Viet Phuc (Vietnamese Royal Costumes), introduces traditional costumes in the later Le Dynasty (1437 to 1471) and Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945). It was created to help Vietnamese people, particularly youth, at home and abroad learn more about the country’s history and culture.

It was launched by fashion designer Le Long Dung and his partners.

Famous artists in cai luong (reformed opera), the 100-year-old traditional art in the south, including People’s Artist Bach Tuyet, were invited to join the project.

Photos of the artists in traditional costumes made by experts will be introduced to the public through a series of exhibitions and photo books this year.

“Our project is not about Vietnamese clothes. It’s about culture. Through our photos, we hope to introduce Vietnam, its history and culture to the world,” said the project’s leader and fashion designer Dung.

Dung and his staff have researched many Vietnamese and Asian documentaries, books, paintings and sculptures. They have also worked with cultural researchers and historians.

They spent two weeks making a dress for a eunuch and two months for a coat for the Queen. Each costume is worth around several million dong.

Shooting is ongoing and 200 photos are expected to be captured.

“I’m very happy to join Dung’s project. I hope his project will enhance young people’s love and knowledge about Vietnamese culture,” said cai luong guru Bach Tuyet, who has more than 40 years of experience in the industry.

Tuyet wore royal costumes that she once used in famous historical plays. She spent several weeks on the photo shoot.

According to Dung, the performance by Tuyet left a strong impression on his staff. “Her photos are beautiful and lively. Viewers can see cai luong performers in costumes as well as learn more about the art."

Dung and his staff are working to display a part of their photos in May in HCM City, including dozens of royal clothes used for the project./.