Ong Dia Temple Festival

 

Time: The 2nd day of the second lunar month.
Place: 125 Le Loi Street, Ward 3, Go Vap District, Ho Chi Minh City.
Objects of worship: Genie of the earth Phuc Duc Chinh Than and many other popular genies.
Characteristics: Bong roi singing, tuong (classical drama) performance.

Ong Dia Temple was built early in the 19th century, honoured in 1852 by King Tu Duc. Every year, the festival is held on the 2nd day of the second lunar month, that is the birth anniversary of the Earth genie Phuc Duc Chinh Than. This festival represents for temple festivals in Ho Chi Minh City and Southern part with the beginning ceremony “giong trong khai trang” beating drum), then followed “moi trau” rite by singing of bong roi, which invites deities to attend the ceremony. A comedy classical drama called “Dia Nang” is performed. Two characters Ong Dia (a genie of the earth) and Nang Tien (a fairy), put together a criticism of the wrong doings of the feudal regime. The festival then concludes with a distribution of gifts.

After that, traditional artists perform dances of mam vang (golden tray), mam bac (silver tray) and do choi (toy game). At the end of the festival is the ceremony of giving gifts.

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