Thứ Hai, 20 tháng 12, 2010


- In Hue Court Music there is the process of integrating, adopting and modifying Chinese, Champa cultures and Buddhist, Confucian impacts. Apart from using some Chinese court music models, this special trait is hidden even in some Vietnamese tunes and motives, and in the use of some modes and musical instruments, etc.
- Being closely connected with "tuong" (hat boi) art: Tuong is an almost permanent art kind in court cultural activities and a necessary item in the ceremonies of the enthroning of Nguyen Dynasty. Tuong and court dances are closely associated. The principal gestures of tuong dances, in which students of tuong should be trained, are the very gestures of "flowers" dance. Many melodies in court dances are tuong melodies.
- Richness and diversity: Hue Court Music synthesizes itself the abundance and diversity in many aspects. In the art-type aspect, it contains all elements of music, dance, drama, prose, poetry, fine arts (decorative art, carving and inlaying of musical instruments as well as the dresses and implements of artists, etc). In the genre aspect, it is composed of ritual music, chamber music, stage music, instrumental music, vocal music, music for dance and acting. Hue Court Music is diversified in types of instrument and timbre, in repertoires, in kinds of orchestra organization and ensemble forms (duo, trio, quintet, sextet, etc.). Its performance environment could be indoor or outdoor, at shrines or worshipping rostrums, on stages or on boats, etc. It is rich in melody too, (the Bac, Xuan, Ai, Dung, Thien ... nuances with different characteristics and sonorities). So Hue Court Music could satisfy both the spectators' audition and vision by its abundance "dishes of different tastes".

- Large scale and highly professional: As the official music of the state, Hue Court Music consists of many large scale orchestras, many music and dance items were performed by a big staff of instrumentalists, singers and dancers. For example, the "Co xuy Dai nhac" orchestra is composed of over 40 instrumentalists, "Bat dat" or "Bai bong" dances are performed by o4 dancers, not including instrumentalists.

- The former royal instrumentalists were the talents selected from the whole country. They were nursed and trained for many years, even from childhood to be highly professional musical executants.

- High degree of improvisation and variation of the melodious scheme (mainly in chamber music and tuong). For the same melody, musical instruments can perform differently to show their distinctive advantages; the instrumentalists can also play the same melody in various ways according to mood, inspiration and performance environment, etc. In music performance this improvisation and variation is not free because they are regulated by rigid rules. Moreover, improvisation is a criterion to value the artist's talent. Correct and good improvisation can only be obtained thanks to inborn talent, long - run learning and training. Possibly, due to this trait, a chamber' orchestra is composed of the single instruments, which helps to create an intimate, heart-to-heart atmosphere.

- Scholarship: This trait is expressed in many aspects as follows:
+ Being written music thanks to a system of musical characters and signs to record .melodies.
+ Music is built in accordance with the ancient cosmology. In order to exist, to harmonize, and develop the cosmos as well as all living substances and aspects of life (including music) are subject to and controlled by the rules of Yin and Yang.
+ There was a system of music theory composed of rules and conceptions controlling the classification of the two music repertoires (presented above) linked with different methods of string stirring and pressing, musical scales, etc, and other rules. Therefore, improvisation should abide by defined rules. Although this music is written and coded, the oral tradition of learning and teaching is still necessary in order to improve correctly.
+ Han language and some kinds of Chinese poetry are used in the lyrics. (This is former scholarly kind of the Viet's language and literature comprehensible only to aristocrats and intellectuals).

The present preserved Hue Court Music, including Nha nhac (ritual court music) constitutes only a small part of the former Hue Court Music in particular and the Vietnamese Court Music in general. Moreover, it has not been preserved intact. Despite of all these facts, it is a precious crystal of Vietnamese artistic intelligence and talent throughout over thousands of years. So, it is not a chance that on 7th November 2003 Nha nhac, Vietnamese Court Music, that Hue has preserved so long, was officially listed by UNESCO among masterpieces of the Oral and intangible heritage of humanity.

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