Water Puppets…Thang Long Water Puppet Theater

Last update at 09/16/2011 04:04. By Hanoi Local Guide.
Water Puppets…Thang Long Water Puppet Theater

Water Puppets…Thang Long Water Puppet Theater
By Hanoi Local Guide


If you are spending time in Ha Noi..DO NOT miss this AMAZING performance at the Water Puppet Theater. You will witness a series of “ancient” short stories and legends presented through the use of traditional music, song, and characters. The stage is actually a large container of water where the characters (carved wooden puppets} “act” out the story. Most of the stories are whimsical and fun and the music is live, performed by a group of musicians that share a side stage adjacent to the water stage.

The first photo shows the "cast" reenacting the "Legend of the Restored Sword" the story of Hoan Kiem Lake and the tortoise.
The second photo shows you the band that plays music and accompanying vocals for most of the "sets"..
The third photo shows you some examples of water puppets that in fact you can purchase in many different shops around Ha Noi...this picture is actually take at the Temple of Literature.

Water puppetry has been practiced here in Vietnam for many hundreds of years; some scholars think upwards of a thousand. Initially this traditional entertainment was started as a celebration of the end of the rice harvest and has been adapted over time to provide “entertainment” for people during special events, gatherings and special ceremonies.

The puppeteers are situated behind a screen and stand in waist deep water controlling the puppets with rods that mostly are under the water. The Puppets are made from wood and lacquered and painted to protect them from water damage.

This theater in Ha Noi takes it name from one of the original names of Ha Noi itself, in about the 11th Century Ly Tai To renamed what is today known as Ha Noi , Thang Long, which means “ascending dragon”. The theater is modern and holds a few hundred people.

The acoustics are pretty good in the theater, the sight lines though could be better, unless you have seats close to the front…which you can reserve if you can purchase your tickets early enough.

The theater is located just slightly to the east and north of Hoan Kiem Lake at 57b Dinh Tien Hoang Street…The theater offers performances throughout the day and into the evening and each performance lasts about an hour.

We paid 60 000 Dong, about the equivalent of $ 3.00 USA. Although I don’t think it’s enforced, there’s a requirement to pay a premium to video or photograph the performance. The premium is another 12 000 Dong…about a dollar.

Purchasing tickets was one of the first things that we set out to do upon arrival in Ha Noi.

We scooped up tickets during our initial walkabout in Ha Noi. It’s such a popular “thing to do” tickets sell out quickly days in advance of performances. If you want to catch this show and you’re visiting during “high season” I would ask my hotel to book tickets for you at the same time you are making your hotel reservation.

Styles:

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Photos of Water puppet show
Water puppet show
Location Hanoi
Basin countries Vietnam

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