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Theatre artists livestream shows during COVID-19 pandemic

Meritorious Artist Kim Tu Long, one of HCM City’s leading theatre actors in cai luong (reformed opera), is one of several artists offering livestreaming performances and videos on social networks during the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Cai luong (reformed opera) artists in HCM City are offering livestream and video performances to serve audiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo courtesy of the producer)

His live performances feature vong co (nostalgic tunes) songs and famous extracts from dramatic and historical plays. 

Tuong (classical drama), a genre of Vietnamese theatre that originated in the 12th century, is also included. 

As the livestream begins on Facebook, Long can be seen sitting on a sofa with his traditional instruments while positioned in front of his computer, amp, and smartphone. 

Long and his wife, actress Trinh Trinh, have also released clips on YouTube as their way to encourage fans in the virus fight. 

In his video, the couple sings cai luong, a 100-year-old theatre form of the South, in a unique style. 

“Livestream shows help my art go to fans more easily and quickly,” said 54-year-old Long, who has 30 years of experience in the industry.

“I spent a few weeks learning how to make a livestream from my young fans, who helped me to offer my art online. I hope my shows on livestream and clips on YouTube will help fans enjoy cai luong while they stay at home,” he said. 

Cai luong actress Binh Tinh of HCM City offers her videos on YouTube.  Photo from the artist’s Facebook

Meanwhile, actor Le Tu of Tran Huu Trang Cai Luong Theatre is working with his staff to release videos on YouTube. 

His videos feature plays and songs in praise of Vietnamese history and culture. Patriotism and bravery are highlighted. 

“I hope my videos on YouTube will help young fans understand why and how cai luong is the spirit of the Vietnamese people," said Tu, winner of the Special Prize for Actor at the National Theatre Festival for Young Talents in Da Nang in 1998. 

“I have tried my best to make each of my online performances to be a quality show that provides young audiences with useful and fascinating things about their traditional theatre.” 

"We have faced difficulties in offering live shows amid the Covid-19 pandemic. YouTube is a way to expand our art and entertain audiences,” added Tu, who has spent several hours daily in the studio to complete his videos. 

The theatre club called Đời (Life) managed by veteran actress Hong Trang will livestream their shows on Vietnamese drama next week. 

Short plays, Lá Mùa Thu (Autumn Leaves) and Bậu Ơi Đừng Khóc (Girls, Don’t Cry), will feature young actors from art schools such as HCM City University of Theatre & Cinematography and HCM City University of Culture.

Each livestream will feature two or three artists. 

“Online performance is different from stage performance. Theatre actors have worked to improve our creations to meet the taste of audiences,” said Meritorious Artist Ca Le Hong, a theatre critic at the HCM City Theatre Artists’ Association. 

Source: Vietnam News

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