Vietnam to organize 1st festival of UNESCO-recognized amateur music, songs

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-4-23 13:18:56

Vietnam will organize for the first time a national festival on Don ca tai tu (southern amateur music and songs) in the Mekong delta province of Bac Lieu from Thursday to Tuesday to highlight the value of this art form, organizers said on Wednesday.

Don ca tai tu has been recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity since December 2013.

Considered one of the country's main chamber music genres, Don ca tai tu originated from Hue court music and folk music of the southern region. The genre has been developing since the 19th century, adapting to local taste. It thrived in the early 20th century and remains crucial to the country's traditional culture.

Don ca tai tu is typically performed at festivals, death anniversary rituals, and celebrations by farmer-artists. Instrumentalists and singers express their feelings by improvising and ornamenting based on 20 principal songs and 72 classical songs. The art has been handed down orally through generations.

Don ca tai tu is the sixth Vietnamese art form to have won UNESCO recognition as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The others include the Worship of Hung Kings in Phu Tho Province ( 2012); the Giong festival of Phu Dong and Soc temples in Gia Lam District, Hanoi (2010); Quan ho (love duets) singing in Bac Ninh Province (2009); Nha nhac (Court music) in the imperial city of Hue (2003); and Gong culture in the Central Highlands (2008).

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