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SEA puppeteers meet in Ha Noi

Preserving and developing the traditional art of puppetry art in Southeast Asia was one of main themes discussed at the sixth meeting of the ASEAN Puppetry Association in Ha Noi.

Pulling strings: Vietnamese puppeteers perform in Ha Noi during the sixth meeting of the Asian Puppetry Association
Pulling strings: Vietnamese puppeteers perform in Ha Noi during the sixth meeting of the Asian Puppetry Association

Since its establishment in 2006, the association has been active in drawing attention to one of the most important forms of intangible heritage in the region.

The association consists of representatives of national puppetry associations, puppetry artists, enthusiasts, experts and observers from the 10 ASEAN member countries.

At the two-day meeting, ASEAN representatives spoke on activities to develop the unique arts.

They said it not only entertained but could also educate people to lead a better and wiser life.

Khin Maung Htwe from Myanmar said that present generations were moving away away from watching puppets perform, suggesting that story creation and script writing should be reviewed with a view to producing high quality shows.

Nguyen Tien Dung, deputy director of the Viet Nam Puppetry Theatre, said Viet Nam had five professional puppetry theatres, 19 folklore puppetry troupes and 11 amateur puppetry troupes.

A book titled The Heritage of ASEAN Puppetry was given to association members. It was compiled by Malaysian professor Ghulam-Sarwar Yousof and finished in 2012.