13:00 | 02/01/2021 Culture & Tourism
(VEN) - Vietnam’s southern amateur music (locally known as Don ca tai tu) is a quintessential art genre dating to the late 19th century, when it was composed by rural residents of the south to be performed after their hours of grueling farm work.
These farm workers were known for exceptional talents in musical and vocal performance.
The genre used to include musical instruments only, with vocal elements added later on to form “Don ca” (musical and vocal).
On December 5, 2013, the art of Don ca tai tu in southern Vietnam was officially recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Don ca tai tu is the sixth Vietnamese art form to have won the UNESCO recognition as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Don ca tai tu originated in the Hue court, thriving in the early 20th century, and remains prominent in the country’s traditional culture. It is typically performed at festivals, memorial rituals, and celebrations by farmer-artists.
Instrumentalists and singers express their feelings by improvising based on classical songs. The art has been handed down orally through generations.