Opera project launched to mark anniversary of Japan-Vietnam diplomatic ties

A new opera project named “Princess Anio” has been launched to celebrate the 50th founding anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and Vietnam.

The project which aims to promote Japan-Vietnam exchange and friendship through music will premiere at Hanoi Opera House in September 2023.

The content of the opera is based on the motif of the love story between Sotaro Araki, a merchant from Nagasaki, Japan, and Princess Ngoc Hoa [called Princess Anio by Japanese] in Hoi An, Vietnam, during the trading era of the Shuinsen in the early 17th century.

According to the history of the Nguyen Dynasty in Vietnam, Princess Ngoc Hoa is the daughter of Lord Nguyen Phuc Nguyen who reigned from 1613 to 1635.

Since ancient times, Japan and Vietnam have had a very good relationship as reliable and equal partners. By making an opera based on this historical fact, the project aims to create a work that will become a symbol of further deepening the relationship between the two countries.

Japanese Ambassador to Vietnam Takio Yamada will take part in the project as an honorary advisor. It is supported and sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Vietnam, the Embassy of Japan in Vietnam and other organisations from both nations.

The ambassador said the opera will help people of the two countries reminisce about the good relationship between Japan and Vietnam in the past and further tighten their bonds in the future.

Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Ta Quang Dong appreciated the opera project, emphasising that the Vietnam-Japan cooperation relationship has achieved many strong and comprehensive development steps in many fields.

“This is a good opportunity for us to review the tradition and friendship of the governments and people of Vietnam and Japan and have a deeper understanding of the significance of this event,” he said.

The deputy minister also said Japan and Vietnam will coordinate in organising a variety of activities to mark the 50th founding anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2023.