|HISTORY PERFORMED - Young actress Huỳnh Như from HCM City’s Trần Hữu Trang Theatre perform in Câu Hò Đất Mẹ (Homeland), a production featuring Vietnamese history, at the 2022 National Cải Lương Festival in Long An Province. Photo courtesy of the organiser.|
LONG AN — Young actors from the Trần Hữu Trang Theatre will perform during the 2022 National Cải Lương Festival which is taking place in Long An Province from November 5 to 20.
They will stage two new plays featuring cải lương (reformed opera), a traditional art form originating from the South over 100 years ago.
While the 90-minute work called Ngược Gió (Against the Wind) highlights the culture and lifestyle of farmers of the Cửu Long (Mekong) River Delta region, Câu Hò Đất Mẹ (Homeland) is a play about Vietnamese history.
“Our young artists will offer Vietnamese theatre in the style of the South. We’re happy to introduce cải lương in a new and experimental concept for our colleagues and audiences in the festival,” said Meritorious ArtIst and director Lê Trung Thảo of Trần Hữu Trang Theatre, who has 20 years of theatrical experience, in an interview with Người Lao Động (Labourer) newspaper.
Thảo’s team also performed in Câu Hò Đất Mẹ, a production portraying the life and career of revolutionary Lê Hồng Phong, depicting patriotism and honesty.
Phong, whose real name was Lê Huy Doan, was born in 1902 to a poor family in Nghệ An Province.
He made great contributions to the restoration of the Communist Party in the 1930s.
He met Nguyễn Ái Quốc, later known as Hồ Chí Minh, and joined the Việt Nam Association of Revolutionary Youth League in 1923.
He led the preparation of the first Congress of the Indochinese Communist Party in Macau (China) in late March 1935. This was the result of hectic preparation of policies and organisation by Indochinese communists under the active leadership of Phong through the Party’s Commander outside Việt Nam and assistance from the Comintern.
Phong died in 1942 after months of torture by French colonialists when he was only 40 years old.
Câu Hò Đất Mẹ also highlights Phong’s love for his wife, revolutionary Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai, one of the prominent female members of the Indochinese Communist Party in the 1930s.
“I asked my actors to read several books about modern Việt Nam’s history, marking the end of French colonialism and the beginning of an independent Việt Nam. This helped to breathe life into my play,” said the play’s director Thảo. “I hope their performance will leave an impression on audiences in Long An.”
Câu Hò Đất Mẹ features young talents Hồng Thắm, Hoài Như and Tấn Lộc.
About 1,000 artists will take the stage at the 2022 National Cải Lương Festival in Long An this year.
The event attracts 22 state-owned and private art troupes, including leading theatres in Hà Nội, HCM City, and Bạc Liêu and Long An provinces.
It is organised by the Performing Arts Department under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and Long An’s People’s Committee. — VNS