Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan and Secretary of the Ninh Binh provincial Party Committee Dinh Van Hung beat the drum and gong to open the Hoa Lu Ancient Capital Festival 2010 on April 18.

This year’s festival is to mark the 1,042 nd year since Dinh Bo Linh defeated 12 warlords to unite the country, made himself king and named the country Dai Co Viet as well as the 1,000 th anniversary of Thang Long-Hanoi.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chairman of the Ninh Binh provincial People’s Committee Bui Van Thang highlighted the accomplishments of Kings Dinh Tien Hoang, Le Dai Hanh and Ly Thai To, who founded strong dynasties fostering long-term independence for the nation.

In the opening night, the provincial Cheo (traditional opera) theatre staged a Hoa Lu festive drum performance which took aspiration from a magnificent period in the nation’s history.

A special art performance directed by People’s Artist Pham Thi Thanh provided the audience an insight of the glorious historical period of the Dinh, Le and Ly dynasties in the ancient capital of Hoa Lu, ended with the moving of the capital to Thang Long (now Hanoi ) by King Ly Thai To.

On the morning of April 18, the festival’s organising board held a fire parade from the Dinh King’s Temple in Gia Phuong commune, Gia Vien district – the birthplace of King Dinh Tien Hoang – to the Hoa Lu Ancient Capital, a water parade from the Hoang Long River and a palanquin parade by 24 local delegations.

During the four-day festival, there will be many cultural and sports activities, including music and water puppetry performances, wrestling, volleyball, human chess, tug of war and walking on stilts.

From now until the grand celebration of Thang Long-Hanoi, Ninh Binh province will implement a number of works of historical significance such as dredging the Sao Khe River , the waterway which King Ly Thai To used to travel to Thang Long-Hanoi.

Traffic routes to the Hoa Lu Ancient Capital relic, the Trang An ecotourism area, the Bai Dinh Pagoda and the statue of King Le Dai Hanh will be built./.