Vietnam is a country of history and long-standing tradition with a bunch of different art performances. Vietnamese arts play a key role in local life as they express the innermost emotion, encourage and bring Vietnamese people many useful lessons in life.
Hence, it might be a pity that you do not spend time exploring traditional art performances in Vietnam. And, in this article today, we will introduce to you some traditional art shows that you should not miss in your Vietnam family holidays.
What are waiting for you?
Hue’s Royal Court Music
The first performance in our list today is the Hue’s Royal Court Music, or commonly known as Nhã nhạc cung đình Huế, which is a genre of court music and dance.
This performance is considered as the royal music as it is used to serve only the imperial family inside the palace from the Tran Dynasty in the 13th century to the Nguyen Dynasty in the late of the 20th century.
Nowadays, royal court music is performed in the old capital of Hue for any visitor who would love to learn about this special form of art. When you attend a Nha nhac performance, you will have an opportunity to witness the combination of traditional instruments such as conical oboe, moon-shaped two-string lute, two-stringed vertical fiddle and bamboo flute.
Nha nhac was recognized as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 2003. From then, both Vietnam government and people have put a lot of effort into preserving this unique form of art.
Quan Ho Singing
Next on our list today is Quan Ho singing, a traditional art from the North of Vietnam. It is a romantic antiphonal folk performance from Bac Ninh province that was used for men and women to communicate with each other.
Quan Ho Bac Ninh is not only about singing between men and women, but also about the traditional costumes of Vietnam. Women who perform Quan Ho need to wear a four-part dress, a scarf and a large round hat. On the other hand, the men’s costume includes ao dai, turbans and an umbrella.
For simple explanation, Quan Ho is a poetic communicating way where participants take turns singing to challenge and response. Generally, a pair of women will start with challenge phrases. Then a couple of men must respond with matching phrase that comes with the same melody as the challenge phrases. This kind of art is performed widely all around the North of Vietnam. Thus, you can experience it without any hassle at theaters and even in rural villages in Bac Ninh.
Ca tru Singing
If you have a passion for Vietnamese traditional art, you might have heard of Ca tru several times before. It is a form of singing poetry from the north of Vietnam.
A group of Ca tru consists of three performers. A woman uses breathing techniques and vibrato to sing the song while strikes a rectangle wooden box. Two musicians will play the three-stringed lute and a praise drum to create the rhythm.
Like many other Vietnamese traditional forms of art, Ca tru is transmitted by oral. And the special singing technique is taught within the family. Hence, during Vietnam independent wars, Ca tru was disuse and under the threat of fading away. However, the government as well as traditional artists have made a great effort to save and transmit these folk. And in 2009, Ca tru was recognized as Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding by UNESCO.
Vietnam Water Puppetry
Puppetry might not be strange to people all around the world. However, Vietnam water puppetry is a special performance that you have never seen before. This form of art was invented in the 11th century by farmers who entertained themselves when their rice fields would flood. Hence, to celebrate the tradition of wet-rice cultivation, Vietnamese people nowadays still use water as the stage for the puppetry performance.
Water puppetry is an art where puppeteers must stand in a waist-deep water pool and control their wooden puppets with long bamboo rods. The stage designed to resemble the image of a temple will hide the puppeteers. Thus, you can only see the puppets moving and dancing on the water surface. Combining with traditional music and light effects, water puppetry is an exciting art for people of all ages, especially children. Hence, it might be a wise choice for your Vietnam holiday with kids.
Vietnam’s traditional art plays an indispensable role in the Vietnamese people’s life. Hence, exploring traditional art performances might be an exciting and amazing journey for visitors.
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