On the morning of 24 February 2018, at the Dragon Steps of the Kính Thiên Palace Foundation in the Imperial Citadel, the Thăng Long – Hà Nội Heritage Conservation Centre worked with Thăng Long – Hà Nội Heritage Association and Mother Goddess and Văn Singing Club to organize an incense offering ceremony to pay tribute to the ancestral kings and the talented officials who were of meritorious service to the country.
This is a traditional cultural activity held as part of the Vietnamese Tết (Lunar New Year) Programme to celebrate the new spring and the foundation of the Communist Party of Vietnam. It featured such components as exhibitions and education of heritage values on the site of the Thăng Long Imperial Citadel. The incense offering ceremony is a highlight in a series of activities held in the space of three weeks before and after the Lunar New Year. Earlier, some traditional rites have also been restored and presented, such as the worshipping of Land Genie and Kitchen Gods, the erection and disassembly of cây Nêu (New Year’s Tree) that attracted a large turnout of visitors who wish to experience the traditional Tết in its fullest sense.
Some photos of the 2018 Incense Offering Ceremon
Drum performance in the inaugural ceremony (photo by: Hồng Hạnh).
Ritual ceremony conducted in the traditional manner (photo by: Hồng Hạnh).
Incense offering in progress (photo by:Phú Lâm).
Incense offering female team (photo by:Phú Lâm).
Dancers with “sinh tiền” musical instrument (clappers, rasp and jingle) (photo by: Hồng Hạnh).
On the afternoon of the same day State President Trần Đại Quang paid a visit and offered incense to the former kings and participated in the setting free of birds (photo by:Phú Lâm).
State President Trần Đại Quang posing for a souvenir photo in front of the Kính Thiên Palace Foundation (photo by:Phú Lâm).
The programme also featured various performances of traditional culture to serve the sightseeing public (photo by:Phú Lâm).
Engaging in exchanges with visitors (photo by:Hồng Hạnh).
Thăng Long – Hà Nội Heritage Conservation Centre