Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — The 2016 National Contest for Young Talented Choreographers, which will identify talented choreographers under 33 years old, will begin this weekend in HCM City.
The HCM City’s Culture, Sports and Tourism and Department of Arts Performance, in co-operation with Việt Nam Dancers’ Association, is organising the contest.
The contest also aims to help dance schools develop new ideas for their curriculum and business, as well as improve management skills.
Contestants will demonstrate their dance and choreography skills during selective rounds. In the final round, they can choose to perform or use other dancers to perform their choreographed works.
Traditional dance and Vietnamese music will be encouraged to participate in the contest.
The six-day event will begin on Sunday at the HCM City Dance of School.
Veteran dancers and choreographers such as Việt Cường and Việt Hùng are on the jury.
Since 2006, the Việt Nam Dancers Association has worked with dance schools, including leading schools such as Việt Nam Dance College in Hà Nội and Army Culture Art University, to preserve and develop Vietnamese dance.
People’s Artist and choreographer Việt Cường of HCM City Television believes dance school must improve training and management to meet demand.
"One of our key problems is how to create more opportunities for choreographers and dancers, particularly young talents, to create and perform new works based on traditional dance on stage," he said.
Cường and his colleagues have offered short-term courses in dance creation for young people for the past four years.
He said better training and management would play an important role in improving the country’s dance profession.
The curriculum for their courses includes 13 subjects, including ballet, music for dance, the language of folk dance, and choreography.
Cultural researchers and theatre experts, such as Trần Hữu Tá, Ngô Hồng Khanh and Lê Tiến Thọ, have developed the curricula.
“Our courses include fact-finding tours to landscapes, historical sites and museums to help students learn more about traditional folk dance skills,” Cường said.
Dance performances in Việt Nam are often of low quality and give audiences a poor impression of the art of dance.
“A key reason is that we have very few skilled choreographers,” he said.
In HCM City, nearly 30 dance troupes, including leading troupes like Bông Sen Traditional Singing, Dance and Music Troupe and Kim Quy Troupe, are facing a shortage of dancers, while artists such as Cường, Hùng, Vương Linh, Vũ Long and Hoàng Châu are nearing the end of their careers.
“Most concert choreographers are former dancers and have no training. They have turned to choreography now that demand has increased. Many dance groups now have no choreographer,” said Lâm Vinh Hải, a leader of M&T Dance Group, and 2012 winner of the TV dance show Thử Thách Cùng Bước Nhảy, a version of the US show So You Think You Can Dance.
"We hope cultural authorities will support both State-owned and private dance troupes so they can cope with financial difficulties and improve dance skills," he said.—VNS