Vietnam is ready for Asia-Europe New Music Festival

(VOV) -For the first-time ever, Vietnam will be hosting the prestigious Asia-Europe New Music Festival – a five-day extravaganza set to kick off on October 8th in Hanoi and Ha Long City.

Vietnam Composers’ Association Chairman and Head of the Festival Organizing Board Do Hong Quan granted an interview to a Radio Voice of Vietnam (VOV) reporter to get his thoughts on the upcoming fest expected to be attended by over 200 musicians from over 30 countries around the globe.

Following are key excerpts from the interview:

VOV: Could you talk about the country’s preparations for the coming festival?

Mr Quan:  Vietnam has completed all of the necessary preparations for the 2014 Asia-Europe New Music Festival, and has spared no effort in its quest to make it a successful event.

vietnam is ready for asia-europe new music festival hinh 0
Composer Do Hong Quan

We hope to create a world-class venue for musicians to perform various genres including auditorium, traditional music, opera, ballet, chorus, and youth music that will make a lasting impression on our international guests.

We would also like them to get an image of Vietnam as a traveller’s paradise, a beautiful country with spectacular diverse landscapes and seas, abundant with flora and fauna, full of hospitable people who possess a rich traditional culture.

VOV:  Could you elaborate on your “Dialogue” composition  at the approaching festival?

Mr Quan:
 My “Dialogue” masterpiece is written for the monochord and symphony orchestra. It comprises various tones, showing varying melodies. Monochord is a Vietnamese traditional instrument, which is considered the unique of its kind in the world. With a monochord you can perform a variety of musical performance techniques and original timbres. Dialogue” is to connect traditional instruments with modern ones from both continents, thus producing mixed sounds of both Vietnamese folk music and European modern music.

In this work, I have combined folk music from the central and the northern regions of Vietnam, including Xoan singing - a traditional art form recognised by the UNESCO as intangible cultural heritage.

“Dialogue” will be performed by monochord artist Hoang Anh Tu and the Vietnam National Orchestra at the festival’s opening ceremony on October 8 under my baton.

VOV: What is your assessment of works to be introduced by local artists?

Mr Quan: Vietnamese composers are well prepared for the coming event during which they will show their latest works about contemporary music.

Prominent works include “Chieu doi do” (the royal edict on the transfer of the capital) composed by Doan Nho following the classical style, “Diem hen”  by Nguyen Thien Dao, and “Con ga rung” (Forest chicken) and “Trong com” (Rice drum) by Dang Huu Phuc that will properly reflect Vietnam’s present-day music life.

VOV: Thank you.

Composer Do Hong Quan’s biography

Do Hong Quan was born in 1956 in a family of musical traditions. He served as stint as Head of the Department of the Vietnam Opera-Ballet Theatre, Vice-Director of the Hanoi Youth Theatre, Head of the Music Department of Radio the Voice of Vietnam (VOV), and is currently the Chairman of the Vietnam Composers’ Association.

His most well known works are Variations for Piano, Four Pictures for Oboe (or Flute), Piano and Percussion, Rhapsodie Vietnam for Grand Symphonic Orchestra, Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Ballet “The Mists”, and Symphonic Fantasy “Open Land”.

Quan has won many prestigious prizes in Vietnam and abroad, including the awards for the film music at three recent Vietnam National Film Festivals.