Vietnamese water puppet theatre

Vitnamese water puppet theatre is one of the most unusual kinds of puppet theatre in the world. Mua roi nuoc ("puppets dancing on the water") has been animating water surfaces in the northern Vietnamese lowlands since the 11th century. This form of theatre, in which the puppeteers stand waist-deep in the water and hide behind a bamboo curtain, originally served as regional entertainment. It combines ideas from everyday rural life and Vietnamese mythology, legends and fairy tales. Short humorous scenes are represented in a sequence, accompanied by songs and traditional instruments. Traditionally performed in the countryside during various harvest celebrations, water puppetry has become part of the repertoire of some professional theatres in the last half century. Today this traditional performance is seen as a typical feature of Vietnamese national culture and enjoys great popularity with both locals and tourists.

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