"Nón" - A unique contemporary dance

by VTV422 July 2016 Last updated at 16:31 PM

VTV.vn - For the first time, the contemporary dance "Nón" was showcased to Hanoi audiences last night.

Inspired by Vietnam's conical hat, young artists Vũ Ngọc Khải and Ngô Hồng Quang came up with the idea of combining contemporary dance with Vietnamese ethnic music.

Both artists live and work overseas, so all the ideas were discussed and shared over the Internet. The dedication between the music of Hồng Quang and dancer Ngọc Khải was created during 10 days of continuous training in the capital city of the Netherlands, Amsterdam, and in two further sessions in Ho Chi Minh City.

Last year, the dance attracted a large audience in HCM City. Last December, it was also performed in front an audience of 300 ministers, vice-ministers, cultural attachés, ambassadors and other dignitaries on the closing event of the Development for Europe programme in Luxembourg.

Organisers said that the artists have kept the skillful mixture of interesting body movements in the contemporary dance with the melodic flow performed on chiêng dây (string gong), đàn tính (a three-stringed instrument from the Tày ethnic minority), đàn môi ba lá (three-piece mouth harp), đàn môi một lá (one-piece mouth harp), đàn bầu (monochord), with singing.

Nón’s concept was built based on the idea and meaning of “round sky, square earth,” which is also the icon of the “square green rice cake” (bánh chưng) and “round white rice cake” (bánh dầy) that expresses the perfect connection of yin and yang – Việt Nam’s spiritual belief.

Moreover, the two simple traditional cakes themselves embrace the elegant and subtle traits of the old culture, “learn to eat, learn to say, learn to wrap, learn to open”. These are the connective lines between the two artists - who have been living abroad for years - and their origins. It helps them to answer the question, “Who am I in a strange foreign land?”

By using body language, music and a way of expressing familiar elements, they are able to share their Vietnamese experiences and feelings while they have been living abroad for years. Thanks to those explorative journeys to the colourful and eventful outside world, they have discovered more love of the cradle where they were born, and more pride in introducing the most special features of Vietnamese culture to the world.

The performance will reunite with HCM audiences through two performances on June 26th and 27th.

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