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Thursday,  Dec 14,2017,14:53 (GMT+7)

A glimpse of Champa traditions

Pierre Semere
Thursday,  Mar 16,2017,23:45 (GMT+7)
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A glimpse of Champa traditions

Pierre Semere

A stunning landscape view of Ninh Thuan Province

During my trip to Vietnam for the shooting of a documentary, I had a chance to visit many beautiful and unique places in Vietnam. The villages and cities of Champa ethnic group in the central coast province of Ninh Thuan are definitely places I will never forget.

From the stunning landscapes of Ninh Thuan to the astonishing and well preserved temples of “Po Klong Garai” and “Po Rome”, this ethnic minority will give us a fresh breathe of inspiration, peace and dreams.

During my day in a small village in the locality, I had an opportunity to contemplate “Rija”, a ceremony full of traditional rituals that Champa people celebrate in all of their residential areas to wish for a peaceful year and good health to all villagers. They also pray to have favorable weather conditions during a year.

When I first entered in this typical place of cult I had a big smile on my face to witness all the energy of all villagers from kids to old people preparing and celebrating this beautiful event. Then all the flavors came and began to witch myself. The smoke of incense combined with traditional fruits and local specialties offering in the ceremony is just a part of it.

Then artists in a local traditional music orchestra began to play drums and clarinets before a shaman entered in the ceremony with a very typical dance to pray for a peaceful year for all villagers.

This shaman showed a great charisma and energy in every move he made in the rhythm of a drum’s beats. That was when he was like in trance, literally possessed by the rhythm and the energy of villagers, I was like hypnotized.

A shaman makes his ritual dance to invoke peace and health to all villagers
A Champa artist plays a typical drum during the ceremony of Rija - PHOTOS: PIERRE SEMERE

 

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