Ao dai under the spotlight in ancient imperial city

The traditional Vietnamese long dress (ao dai) was in the spotlight at an ao dai fashion show entitled ‘Dau Xua’ (Vestiges of Old Times) at the Hien Nhon gate in the ancient imperial city of Hue on June 8 as part of the ongoing 2008 Hue Festival.

Around 200 Vietnamese long dresses were displayed on an ancient and glistening stage in front of the glamorous Hien Nhon gate, one of the four gates that lead to the Imperial Enclosure (Hoang Thanh), with candle light, coloured smoke, fireworks and also music by renowned Vietnamese musician Van Cao and Trinh Cong Son playing in the background.

Vestiges of ancient Hue were imbued in the designs by 12 famous Vietnamese designers such as Minh Hanh, Thu Giang, Hong Dung and Quoc Bao.

According to designer Minh Hanh, the dresses highlighted the beauty and the classical character of the ao dai with the aim of encouraging the nation’s young people to inherit and develop traditional values.

Different from previous Hue Festival which chose Trang Tien bridge or the Huong river as a venue for the fashion show, this year’s ao dai show was organised in Hien Nhon Gate with the aim to highlight the beauty of ao dai in an ancient space.

The ao dai show is one of the most looked forward to events in every Hue festival and also one of the last main events of the 2008 Hue Festival, which will finish on June 11.