The Nadun Festival (meaning 'entertainment' and 'carnival' in the Tu language) is a unique folk activity among the Tu ethnic people concentrated in MingheCounty, Northwest China's QinghaiProvince. The festival is held after harvesting the wheat in the summer, and usually lasts two months from July 12 to September 15 on the lunar calendar. It's no wonder that some people call it the longest carnival in the world.
Nadun Festival is an annual activity, which is held by one village alone or two villages together. The latter is more common. One village is the host, while the other is guest. All the men in two villages stand in rows, holding colorful flags on their shoulders, shouting “dahao”, enjoying themselves by singing and dancing to the lively rhythm of drums.
Nadun Festival mainly consists of dance and drama performance. Huishou dance" is the starting program in Nadun, and is a mass collective dance which scores of and even several hundred people participate in, the participators are in the sequence from old to young. Accompanying with the rhythms of drums and gongs, all the people step, sway the body, move from left to right and dance by circling the ground, the dancers' posture and movements are graceful, the atmosphere is warm and the scene is magnanimous and grand.
Nadun Festival is the most important entertainment to Tu people. During the festival, Tus visit friends and hold party with family members, which is a good way to maintain steady and harmonious society. It’s also a good chance for young men and women to make friends.
he Spring Festival and Nadun Festival are two most important festivals to Tu people. Their traditional festivals include Guanjin Hui in Jan 14 of lunar calendar, Leitai Hui in Feb 2, TempleFair in Mar 3 and Apr 8, Danma Xihui in Jun and etc. In the festivals, there are lots of entertainment, such as horse racing, wrestling, “Hua’er” singing, besides goods and cultural exchange fair is also held.