THUA THIEN - HUE — Experts from the Korean National Centre of Traditional Performance and Art will work with Vietnamese experts to restore the proper sound to Hue's old musical instruments.
The instruments include bien chung (bronze bells) and bien khanh (musical stones) used in the Hue Royal Court.
The Hue Monuments Conservation Centre said South Korean and Vietnamese experts, who had previously worked on the same instruments, would learn to create new bien chung and bien khanh.
In 2010, the centre gave financial and technical support to a project to restore and upgrade the sets.
South Korean and local experts also conducted research on the way to play the instruments, which were popular in Hue in the early 20th century as well.
These instruments are rarely used today, and musicians do not know how to play them.
The funds were drawn from the provincial budget and the centre.
According to the Hue Monuments Conservation Centre, only eight items of bien chung and 10 of bien khanh are displayed at the Hue Royal Court Antiques Museum. All of the instruments are damaged.
Experts said each group of bien chung and bien khanh should include 12 items. In 2003, Vietnamese experts restored the instruments but the work was not well-executed.
The restoration project is part of a national programme to preserve and expand the value of the Hue Royal Court Music, nha nhac, the first intangible heritage of Viet Nam to be recognised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).
The art of nha nhac was performed at annual festivals, celebrations and special events, such as enthronements, funerals and other official ceremonies. — VNS