Dressing the part for village dance

Male villagers dressed as women dancing at the annual Trieu Khuc festival in Trieu Khuc village in Thanh Tri district, Hanoi, yesterday.

The three-day festival is held on the ninth day of the first lunar month to honour King Phung Hung, who is credited with creating the flirtatious jig in the year 905 while leading a war against China's Tang troops.

It is said that he came up with the cross-dressing dance to boost the morale of his troops.

As there were no women available, the soldiers dressed to play the part.

It grew in popularity and is now integral to the village's festivals.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 25, 2018, with the headline 'Dressing the part for village dance'. Subscribe