Sunday, January 19 2020


New notes are blowing in the wind

Update: March, 16/2015 - 19:30
Poetic pose: Thu Hue and Han Giang in Chopiniana, which ‘portrays a dream-world where ballerinas bathed in moonlight dance around a young poet.' — Photo Trinh Xuan Hai

The Viet Nam Opera and Ballet will, as usual, present a combination of classical music and dance in its new show, but this time, a new, folksy element has entered the picture. Nguyen Ha reports.

There is something very new to look forward to as top artists of the Viet Nam Opera and Ballet (VNOB) Company, including sopranos Vanh Khuyen, Thang Long and tenor Thanh Binh, begin the second leg of their 2014-2015 season after a long Lunar New Year break.

Directed by conductor Dong Quang Vinh, the new show will combine solo songs, ballet, choir and, for the first time, a bamboo instrument band.

Vinh, a talented and much loved conductor by local audiences, has taken over as director from the long-serving Briton, Graham Sutcliff.

"This is a new feature of our company that we are very proud of," Pham Anh Phuong, VNOB Artistic Director told Viet Nam News.

"The band will play many Vietnamese songs, of course, but it can also play other international music hits."

At the moment, Vinh is definitely the best man for the position. He has returned to Viet Nam after 10 years in China, where he was trained in traditional orchestra directing and obtained his Master's degree in philharmonic orchestra conducting.

"My parents used to have their own bamboo band," Vinh told Viet Nam News. "They used to tour Europe and Japan, but now they're retired. I want to bring their spirit to life and our new band has seven members of my extended family."

For Suc song moi, or Sunshine Music, their Spring Gala on Friday and Saturday, the company will play with two invited musicians.

In step: The classic duo in Swan Lake will be performed by Han Giang and Thu Hue on the stage of Ha Noi Opera House for the first time. — Photo Trinh Xuan Hai

The show will have another new feature. The company's acclaimed ballet dancer Dam Han Giang will join rising star Thu Hue for the first time in the Swan Lake white swan duo.

Trained in Hong Kong, Han Giang has danced the male lead role in Giselle, Spartacus and in the full production of Swan Lake with the Hong Kong Ballet.

"This is the first time I am dancing this duo with Han Giang, so I'm quite excited," Thu Hue told Viet Nam News.

The VNOB is sponsored for the most part by the government but does not have a organised hierarchy like most ballet companies in the world. Everyone is in the corps de ballet and some principal dancers are picked depending on each show or production.

Asked if she would want to become the black swan and perform in a full-house production, Hue played her cards close to the chest, saying: "Right now, I'm concentrating on rehearsing for the show. I'm just getting myself ready for the next assignment." — VNS

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