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Việt Tiến TV - Omni2

Interview about Community Tet Festival in Toronto

The interview by Viet Tien was broadcasted on Rogers- Channel 14, Bell Express Vu - channel 216, Star Choice, channel 395. In Ontario, without TV services, it can be viewed on channel 69. The first part was broadcasted on Sunday, Dec 27, 2009 at 10:00 AM

Viet Tien: Ladies and Gentlemen, Vietnamese Association, Toronto and other community groups have their annual major event as Tet - Lunar New Year Festival around this season every year. This is one of the largest Lunar New Year Festivals in Canada. This year, the Festival will be on January 23, 2010. Please with me welcome Dr. Nguyen, Hoanh Khoi, Chair of the Tet - Lunar New Year Festival, and Mr. Nguyen, Van Truong Quang , President of the Vietnamese Association, Toronto.

Viet Tien: Hello

Dr. Nguyen and Mr. Nguyen: Hello Viet Tien and everyone now watching the program

Viet Tien: The Lunar New Year Festival is the annual event, but I still want to ask you a question: What is the purpose of the Tet- Lunar New Year Festival?

Dr. Nguyen: The Festival of this year, yet, carries the same purpose of the tradition of the community, having a place for community members to meet and to celebrate their most important event as Lunar New Year time, and notwithstanding, to remain and to develop the Vietnamese culture’s value.

Mr. Nguyen: addition to, what can you tell what Dr. Nguyen has just said, the Lunar New Year Festival is also a message to the community at large that how we have grown and get our voice heard

Viet Tien: Briefly, can you tell about the program?

Dr. Nguyen: The program is very diversed with music show, badminton competition, children games, Vietnam Traditional Village, general entertainment games for adults, exotic foods, Singing and Dancing competition, displays, etc.

Mr. Nguyen: We have more than 60 kioks and display tables now in the plan, including Non-Vietnamese organizations and vendors also to join the festival this year

Viet Tien: One of the most interesting activities is the music show, can you say something about it?

Dr. Nguyen: This year we have the exclusive collaboration from Thuy Nga Paris by Night Show with talented artists such as well known MC Nguyen Ngoc Ngan and Nguyen Cao Ky Duyen, many popular singers. The extra ordinary performance on stage this year is the Paris by Night Dance Troupe, the group that made Paris by Night stand out from the entertainment industry.

Viet Tien: And what about comedy, who will perform this year?

Mr. Nguyen: beside very well known singers such as Quang Dung, Thu Phuong, Bang Kieu, Minh Tuyet, Manh Quynh, Huong Thuy, Thanh Tuyen, Quang Le, Ho Le Thu, Nhu Loan, we will have the top two comedians: Le Tin and Thuy Nga. This year we also have two bands joined: Liberty Band and The Headline, as we know, these bands have their shows weekly acrossed North America, and it’s not easy that we could reserve both of them with us this year

Viet Tien: Any other things beside the fabulous show that you mentioned?

Dr. Nguyen: We will have Dragon Dance, Drum Dance from the First Nations Community, Indonesian Dance Group, Pham Duc Thanh Folk Music School, Street Performance. The stage number 2 will be a place for competition of singing, dancing and also professional performing.

Viet Tien: As you mentioned earlier about Vietnam Tradional Village, audiences would be very interested since this is one of the focal points of the Festival, can you say something more about it?

Mr. Nguyen: Yes, the Vietnam Traditional Village is one of the focal points in the Festival where goers can experience many activities that Vietnamese people do in their homeland such as Thả Thơ (the game in which participants fill up a space of a poem), Ông Đồ (Caligraphy writter), Sticky rice cake wrapping demonstration. This year we have invited a Vietnamese who won top chef award of Canada to come to the village area for cooking and decoration persentation. We also have many collaborations from other organizations as Quang Ngai, Vietnam Temple, Giao Xu Cac Thanh Tu Dao, Nha Tho Duc Me La Vang, Hoi Thanh Tin Lanh, etc. One special game that we would like to introduce to younger generation is Recognizing Your Country. This game is intended to promote the understanding of Vietnam's culture and history by the younger generation.

Viet Tien: What about sport competitions?

Mr. Nguyen: We love to have more sport competitions in the festival, however, this year we organize badminton competition for the first time of trying. The winner will be announced and receive award on stage.

Viet Tien: Can we talk about Scholarship program and where you did receive the funding from?

Mr. Nguyen: Ladies and Gentlemen, The VAT scholarship program has been running for more than ten years with more than 140 recipients. Funding came from private donors. This year, we will have 10 awards for students from grade 12 to university students. Application is now still open.

Viet Tien: I see another interesting area for children, I would like to know more about this area.

Dr. Nguyen: this area will be co-ordinated by university students with games, face painting, free balloon, mountain climbing, etc.

Viet Tien: What is the capacity of the Festival this year?

Dr. Nguyen: We have 200,000 square feet that can hold more than 10,000 attendants

Viet Tien: This is a very variety show, so how much is the entrance fee?

Dr. Nguyen: no difference from the admissions last year. Adult Ticket is $16 if bought in advance, free for children under 6. $8 for children from ages 6 - 12. Seniors and Students can pay $12. This year we have different VIP tickets ranging from $30, $50 and $70. Please keep in mind that if you buy tickets at the door, the prices will be higher.

Viet Tien: Do you receive Government funding or any kind of financial support from the Government to organize this Tet-Lunar New Year Festival?

Mr. Nguyen: We would like to confirm that we have not received funding from the Government, but from private donors, and comercial ads. You will see names of donors on the slide show for those who contribute $300 or more. After the Festival, we will contribute the gain (if any) to charity, and will organize fund raisers to cover our loss (if applicable).

Viet Tien: Who will be the Guests of Honour?

Dr. Nguyen: We have the honor to host the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, Ministers of Canada and Ontario, MP, MPP, Mayor of City of Toronto, Mayor of City of Mississauga, this is the opportunity that the voice of our community can be heard.

Viet Tien: This may be a personal question, why do you involve so much in the community activities and the Festival, although you are already busy with your career and your family?

Dr. Nguyen: I participate to help the children and the next generation. I also want to have the Vietnamese culture included.

Mr. Nguyen: I would like to give a hand, together with others, make an effort to have our children understand their roots and clearly know where they were from. Please help us, everybody, together we can make it happen.

Viet Tien: Thank you so much Dr. Nguyen, Hoanh Khoi and Mr. Nguyen, Van Truong Quang for your time, and I wish you'll have successful event.

Dr. Nguyen: Thanks so much Viet Tien, hope to see you again at the Better Living Centre, CNE on Jan 23, 2010

Mr. Nguyen: For more information, please call 416 536 3611 and check out the Festival’s updates on the media every week. Thank you and goodbye