ExperiencesCity & CultureAbout Hoi An to play hut cards with folk artisans of Quang
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City & Culture

About Hoi An to play hut cards with folk artisans of Quang

Translated by Bing
Bai Choi - Intangible Cultural Heritage recognized by UNESCO is an indispensable spiritual dish for the people of Quang Nam. Playing hut cards helps visitors experience indigenous culture with extremely interesting folk music in Hoi An, Quang Nam.

Unique cultural imprint of the hut of Quang


The hut card is a folk game, the way of playing like Southern bingo, but is held in bamboo and cork huts combined with singing performances. Singing hut songs is a type of folk art performance performed by artisans and chanting verses in rhythm combined with sound melodies created from ethnic instruments to attract listeners.


Although not the cradle of Bai Choi, Hoi An has made its own mark, depicting and imprinting indigenous culture into this folk art. The hut songs with a typical rustic Cantonese accent are responded by artisans in a witty way to create a lively atmosphere. Besides, the hut space of Quang is adorned by colorful lanterns with all shapes to create an unmistakable ancient and cozy look.


Source: Hoian World Heritage


The content of the Quang song, besides spreading traditional moral values, is still encouraged to be more creative to catch up with the spirit of the times. The verse melody also flexibly uses the ancient tone, lying, Xuan Nu dance, physicality. In which, the Xuan Nu dance is dominated by the poetic form of six bowls, but seven six bowls,...


Experience a hut card festival in Hoi An, Quang Nam


The hut in many places is often held on holidays and Tet at community activities. Particularly for Hoi An ancient town, this activity takes place every night to bring local culture closer to tourists. At 19h00, at the intersection of Bach Dang and Nguyen Thai Hoc streets, folk songs on the background of ethnic musical instruments including storks, trumpets, drums stirred up the bustling atmosphere like Tet in the heart of Hoi Street.


Coming to the hut card festival, besides experiencing traditional culture, visitors can also try their luck with the cards played. To participate, players buy cards for 20,000 VND. On each card there are 3 non-identical cards printed on raw, thin dó paper with unique names and imitated images.


Source: visavietnam.net/ VOV


When all the cards are released, the Hieu brothers and sisters in the central hut will let the game begin. One by one, Hieu and siblings picked up from the bamboo tube each tattoo to know the name of the card they would shout. The poetic couplets are sung by the artisan with a strange but familiar folk rhythm that always begins with:


"Silently listen, silently hear me shouting the card, what song it came out here..."


The name of the song will be revealed at the end of each reply. If it coincides with the card on the card, the player taps the muzzle or gestures to be given a flag.


Source: Hoian/ Hoian World Heritage Tour


In order to increase the drama near the end, the artisan sings a hut song that changes unexpectedly in the couplet that makes players experience all kinds of emotions. Going from nervous to momentarily frustrated and finally bursting with joy that his card had the card played. After meeting 3 cards or three flags, players shouted to signal to the organizers. The lucky winner was given a lantern to take home as a souvenir.


Source: visavietnam.net/ Hoian World Heritage


The special position of the hut with the people of Quang Nam in particular and domestic and foreign tourists in general

Hoi An hut is the pride preserved and promoted for generations of Quang people. For many years, children from middle school here have been exposed to hut lessons as an extracurricular activity. Every year, Hoi An also organizes a hut card contest between communes with the desire to connect the community and nurture the love of people with this traditional cultural game.


Source: visavietnam.net/ Hoian World Heritage


From the efforts of local people to preserve and promote, Bai Choi has contributed to creating a Hoi An imbued with local cultural identity in the eyes of tourists from all over the world. Therefore, travel to Hoi An not only to immerse yourself in the contemplative beauty of the tile-roofed houses wearing ancient yellow shirts, or enjoy specialty dishes, but also to play a hut card festival!


Written by : Thao Tran

Image source: Multiple authors
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