Update: 04:27 | 19/10/2020
(BGO) – Owning hundreds of ancient Quan ho (love duet) melodies, the artisans in Viet Yen district (Bac Giang province) have devoted and passed their enthusiasm to the folk art as well as nurture the love for Quan ho to many generations, helping preserve the humanity heritage.
Wallowing in the melodies
Growing up from the Quan ho cradle in the north bank of Cau river, Hoac Cong Cho (born in 1936) in Trung Dong village, Van Trung commune knows to sing Quan ho at 7 years old. He has performed Quan ho for 70 years and acted as Chairman of Trung Dong Quan ho Club for 55 years, hence gaining a lot of Quan ho knowledge and technique of performance.
The Quan ho female and male singers in Noi Ninh village, Ninh Son commune.
In 2019, he was recognized by the Prime Minister as People’s Artisan. At high age, he is able to remember more than 100 melodies of ancient Quan ho and teaches several generations in the village and commune. Artisan Hoac Cong Cho is considered as one of the “Quan ho living treasure”.
Similarly, Dam Thi Bui (born in 1957) in Noi Ninh village, Ninh Son commune has special love for Quan ho. Her mother and sister taught her the way to sing Quan ho when she was 9 or 10 years old. As a student at secondary school and later staff in charge of culture and art at the village, Bui maintains performing and teaching hundreds of ancient Quan ho melodies to many people.
Viet Yen district is proud of owning the unique Quan ho culture treasure passing from long long time ago where many talented male and female singers were born. Also, the district is the locality having the biggest number of artisans recognized in the intangible culture heritage in general and Quan ho in particular.
Preserving the heritage
Implementing the Project “Preserving and promoting the cultural heritage of the Bac Giang’s peoples in the period 2011 - 2020”, the district People’s Committee instructed to build 2 projects relating to Quan ho, including “Preserving the Quan ho exchanging performance in 2012” and “Expanding the Quan ho exchanging performance in 5 ancient Quan ho villages of Mai Vu, Noi Ninh, Huu Nghi, Gia Son and Sen Ho in the period 2013 - 2014”.
To date, 18 Quan ho villages in the district have been named in the list of cultural heritage preservation and development, 50 Quan ho clubs have been formed, 120 Quan ho clubs have been operated to draw hundreds of artisans, male and female singers to collect the melodies then teach to the young generations while introducing and promoting the folk songs. Many people whole heartedly devote their life to the art form.
Typically, the Meritorious Artisan Nguyen Phu Hiep (born in 1962), Chairman of Tho Ha Quan ho Club in Van Ha commune has collected and practised about 200 melodies and nearly 600 ancient Quan ho songs since 1989. He used to perform Quan ho in France in 2012 at an event held by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. Now, he still teaches Quan ho performance in his area, joins several art playgrounds and activities to preserve the heritage in and outside the province.
To promote the role of the clubs and artisans in Quan ho heritage preservation, the district People’s Committee has recently paid due attention to upgrading and building the cultural mechanism, especially communal house and pagoda so that the artisans have places to perform, teach and widespread Quan ho in the community.
According to Dao Trong Ca, Head of the Division of Culture and Information in the district, the Division will further consult the district People’s Committee to instruct the competent agencies to coordinate with the communes and towns to accelerate the communication, organize Quan ho teaching course, invest in facilities for the activities, create more cultural playgrounds to the artisans and clubs.
Several experts suggested that the authority, manager and competent agencies should research and consider to issue policy and mechanism to support the expense for the artisans so as to encourage their strong attachment and more active contributions to heritage preservation.