|Friends in song: Jazz saxophonist Quyen Van Minh will start the show with a musical tribute to his late friend Quoc Truong. — Photo courtesy Binh Minh Jazz Club
HA NOI — Viet Nam's leading jazz saxophonist Quyen Van Minh and his 16-piece big band Song Hong will take the stage for a live concert next Tuesday night to commemorate the life of late band member Quoc Truong.
Minh will start the concert, entitled Quyen Van Minh and Friends with Jazz, with the song Ha Noi Nhung Cong Trinh (Ha Noi with New Constructions), which was written by Truong.
"Singing is not my strong point but I want to perform the song as a tribute to my friend and my band-mate," the veteran jazz artist said.
Several other Vietnamese songs will be presented in jazz arrangements by different singers, including 72-year-old singer Ha Duc Son, whose voice Minh has described as "amazing".
Songstress Bang Tam will present Xa Khoi (Offshore). Minh will also perform tunes by other Vietnamese composers as well as his own piece Giai Dieu Sa Pa (The Melody of Sa Pa) – which according to the 58-year-old artist "clearly presents the traditional local tunes".
"Singer of the Year 2010" Tung Duong and People's Artist Quang Tho will take part in the show as special guests. Duong will perform several English songs such as Misty, I Can't Make You Love Me, Let's Fall in Love and At Last while the veteran tenor Tho will present Ngon Lua Cao Nguyen (The Highlands' Flame), which was arranged by the late Truong for his performance at a musical gala in Cuba in 1987.
"In Viet Nam, jazz is not one of the popular music genres so there are so many opportunites for me to sing jazz. That's why I'm so happy to be part of the Quyen Van Minh and Friends with Jazz – one of the country's most significant jazz concerts. It also gives me a very special feeling to share the stage with my ex-teacher Tho," said Duong.
Minh will also team up with trumpet player Xuan Vuong to perform the I've Got You under My Skin.
Minh has spent dozens of years working hard to help create a distinctive Vietnamese jazz style that aims to captivate domestic audiences as well as stand out on international stages.
He has taught saxophone at the National Academy of Music for the past 24 years and is the founder of a jazz club that offers performances every night with the intent of boosting the skills of local artists, as well as the awareness of and interest in jazz among Hanoians.
The event will take place at the Ha Noi Opera House on January 10 at 8pm. Tickets cost VND300,000, VND700,000 and VND1 million, and are available at the Opera House box office and Binh Minh Jazz Club, 65 Quan Su Street, Ha Noi. — VNS