|Revival: A scene from the drama Da Co Hoai Lang (Night Drumbeats Cause Longing for Absent Husband), which is being restaged in a new version to celebrate 20 years since its release. — Photo courtesy of IDECAF Theatre
HCM CITY (VNS) — The drama Da Co Hoai Lang (Night Drumbeats Cause Longing for Absent Husband), a production by talented scriptwriter Thanh Hoang, is being restaged in a new version to celebrate its 20 years of release.
The work's theme highlights the country's traditional culture and its spirit of different generations.
Since its debut by the 5B Small Theatre in 1994, the play has been staged more than 900 times in HCM City and Ha Noi.
It received the Golden Medal at the National Theatre Festival in 1995.
The performance will be staged by the artists of IDECAF Theatre and targeted to young audiences.
"We want to encourage young people learn more about Vietnamese culture through theatre," said director Vu Minh, one of the city's young theatre talents.
Meritorious Artist Thanh Loc will continue his performance in the title role of Tu, an elderly man who is nostalgic after years living away from Viet Nam.
His peer, Meritorious Huu Chau, will play a minor role, Tu's close friend.
Both Loc and Chau, who are often seen in comedic roles, had to refine their acting skills to successfully portray the spirit of Vietnamese.
The play features young faces Luong The Thanh and Van Trang.
Director Minh asked his young staff to work hard on learning traditional culture and theatre, and demanded that they not over-play their roles, as is customary in many comedic productions.
"Although my friends and I really like movie or music performances, we enjoy getting a taste of what serious drama Da Co Hoai Lang is like," said Nguyen Thi Tu Vi, a 20-year-old student at HCM City University of Economics, who attended the show's premiere last month.
Vi said that she learnt about the play from her parents, who watched the show performed by talented actors Loc, Viet Anh, Hong Van and Quoc Thao in 1995.
Da Co Hoai Lang is named after the famous song Vong Co (Nostalgic Tunes) written in 1920 by Cao Van Lau of Bac Lieu Province, who is recognised as a guru of cai luong (renovated opera) theatre.
Vong co is an art form that is part of cai luong, the south's traditional music born after World War I that has developed since the 1920s.
In Minh's production, the song is still used to highlight the play's theme.
The play will be staged at 8pm at IDECAF Theatre, 28 Le Thanh Ton Street in District 1 on Saturday and Sunday. — VNS