ExperiencesCity & CultureThe most must-see contemporary and traditional art shows in Saigon
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City & Culture

The most must-see contemporary and traditional art shows in Saigon

Translated by Bing
With the combination of cultural and entertainment elements based on Vietnamese folk materials, the following contemporary art shows have become spiritual dishes welcomed by many domestic and foreign audiences.

À o show - Bamboo circus tells village and street stories

À O show is a type of storytelling circus using bamboo props launched in 2013. The "Ah" in the name represents "village", "Stain" is reminiscent of "street". "Ah!", "Oh!" are also exclamation words that the audience utters when watching the unexpected performances in this performance.

The artists not only bring the audience eye-catching acrobatics and juggling, but also dance performances, contemporary dance, martial arts performances ... alluring. Familiar bamboo and cork objects appear in all contexts, such as the rope connecting the actors, art forms together, to recreate the life and soul of Southern farmers.

On the background of traditional musical instruments such as pliers, paintings, bamboo flutes, lip lutes combined with modern beatbox sounds, peaceful, rustic village scenes or modern cities, hustle and bustle gradually appear vividly, bringing different emotions for people to enjoy.

Schedule: The latest performance is at 20h on May 1-3, 2021.

Ticket price: 3 classes VND 560,000 - VND 920,000 - VND 1,280,000 (currently discounted price 20%)

Duration: 60 minutes

"My Village" - Northern countryside in bamboo circus

The bamboo circus "My Village" was born in 2005 imbued with the culture of the Northern Delta. The music of the performance focuses on typical instruments of the Northern region such as lip lute, trumpet, erhu, paddle drum ... combined with close village sounds such as the sound of chickens crowing, lullabies, the sound of night redemption, the chanting of tapping, the sound of labor ...

The poetic picture of the Northern countryside appears with every swinging movement, flexing ... of the group of artists with rustic bamboo. The image of children playing with bamboo chopsticks while their parents work in the field, farmers smoking a plow during their lunch break under the shade of trees or couples dating on a bamboo bridge under the twinkling starry sky.... 

"My village" is likened to a "ticket" back to rural life in the Northern village, to release the soul along the stream of once beloved memories.

Tour schedule: Not yet announced

Ticket price: 3 classes VND 700,000 - VND 1,150,000 - VND 1,600,000

Duration: 60 minutes

"Teh Dar" - Highland Sounds in the Bamboo Circus

Teh Dar in K'ho means to go in circles - a familiar image in the community activities of the Central Highlands peoples. The bamboo circus art show combined with live music was launched in 2016.

The image of Teh Dar is fully exploited by the director through bold acrobatics and beautiful shapes of the artists. m The great thousand influence is also evident through the skillful use of more than 20 musical instruments of the Bana, Ede, K'ho, Giarai ethnic groups including gongs, drums, prisoners and, Goong, Đing five, T'Rung, rattle... 

Combined with stage art and fanciful lighting, the show takes viewers into the ghostly space of elephant hunts, buffalo stabbing festivals or the romantic space of the dating moon night, the vibrant space of the gong festival. 

Schedule: No upcoming dates announced

Ticket price: 3 classes VND 700,000 - VND 1,150,000 - VND 1,600,000

Duration: 60 minutes

"Morning Dew" - Intoxicating country painting

Morning Dew is a contemporary dance combined with semi-classical ballet revolving around the stories of rice crops, rice grains and the daily life of farmers in the Southern Plains. The dance premiered in 2011.

Morning Mist touches viewers' emotions when recreating the soulful but extremely vivid village scene through flexible and smooth body language on stage. The performance props are made from familiar items of farmers such as: rice drying cushions, chopsticks for stirring rice, baskets, nong, nia, sieves, double optical loads ... or straw trees, rice trees, bamboo trees, lemongrass ... One of the most dramatic scenes of the play is the white cascade of rice cascading onto the stage floor from the ceiling of the theater, reminiscent of the "pearl of heaven", the fruit of the sweat and tears of the farmer who committed his life to the field.

Sound and music are also the highlight of this performance when the lyrics, verses, and singing are skillfully integrated with the sound of the holy gourd, the sound of running water, the ringing of bells, the sound of frogs creaking. The audience can feel the joyful atmosphere of the seasonal day, hear the familiar sound of the countryside, smell the scent of lemongrass, the smell of burning incense in the pagoda ... It was as if returning to a real countryside.

Schedule: No upcoming dates announced

Ticket price: 3 classes VND 700,000 - VND 1,150,000 - VND 1,600,000

Duration: 60 minutes

"Palao" - The story of Cham culture in the heart of Hoi Street

Palao in Cham means "to let go, to float, to receive new things". When a big boat is about to sail, when a young person is born, when sending off a living being, the Cham say "palao". In that spirit, the Palao performance released in 2018 distilled the best of a dying culture, to create a "living museum" of Cham culture on stage with contemporary indigenous dance and music. 

In Palao, white cloth and terracotta jars act as storytellers. Things associated with Cham life when going on stage become a bridge to help viewers better understand the values of Cham cultural heritage.

In the middle of the red-and-white minimalist stage, the sound of ancient customary instruments such as Ghin, Paranung, Saranai, Kanhi, the trumpet of the Cham ethnic group is boldly broken with electronic music, making listeners immersed in a strong and attractive music space. 

Schedule: No upcoming dates announced

Ticket price: 3 classes VND 700,000 - VND 1,150,000 - VND 1,600,000

Duration: 60 minutes

General notes when viewing:

  • Venue: Ho Chi Minh City Opera House - No. 07 Lam Son Square, District 1
  • Before the show, the audience was served a welcome drink
  • After the show, the audience can take photos and interact with the artists;
  • The show is not intended for children under 5 years old
  • Taking photos, filming, livestreaming the performance is absolutely prohibited
  • Do not make noise and remember to turn off your phone ringer when watching the show to respect the artists and the audience around you
Image source: Multiple authors
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