In this popular cultural exhibit, families and schools visited interactive “theaters” to make a connection between five classic Vietnamese folktales and the enduring cultural values and traditions they represent. The facades of each folktale theater represented a distinct geographic region in the Southeast Asian nation: rural areas, the “streets” of a city and and houses/houseboats like those found in Viet Nam’s urban and riverside regions.

Visitors explored traditions included in wedding ceremonies, ancestral worship practices, cultural dances and were able to take part in the preparations for Tet Nguyen Dan (Lunar New Year). The exhibit served as a jumping off point for special programming including a weekend-long Mid Autumn Children’s Festival, children’s art exhibition and a new theater production by acclaimed playwright Ngoc Minh Nguyen.  

This exhibit was on view September 23, 2011 through January 8, 2012.

Dragons & Fairies: Exploring Viet Nam Through Folktales is presented by the Freeman Foundation Asian Exhibit Initiative, administered by the Association of Children’s Museums and created by The Children’s Museum of Houston.

The Museum President and members of the United Nations inside the exhibit.

H.E.Ambassador Le Hoia Trung, Permanent Representative of Viet Nam to the United Nations led the delegation that toured the Dragons & Fairies exhibit wih LICM President Suzanne LeBlanc during LICM’s Mid-Autumn Children’s Festival.

Visitors looking at a globe of the world.

Children start their exhibit experience by viewing the distance between Viet Nam and Garden City.