Published: 04/07/2011 05:00



Websites on music, Hanoi lakes make debut

The Centre for Environment and Community Research (CECR) made debut a website on Hanoi lakes at on June 30.

With six main parts featuring ecological environment protection, and climate change, lakes in Hanoi, book on Hanoi’s lake, lake protection community, gallery and CECR, the website will serve as a reference for environmental specialists, managers, businesses and community to talk ways to protect Hanoi’s lakes.

Additionally, the website also presents the current environmental situation of 120 lakes, ponds and swamps in the districts of Ba Dinh, Hoan Kiem, Dong Da, Hai Ba Trung, Cau Giay and Tay Ho along with 23 specific proposals for the current lake management.
CECR also introduced a location map of lakes in six inner districts, as part of the city map.

The same day, the Vietnam Centre for Protection of Music Copyrights (VCPMC) and the Blue Sea Media company made public the website

Musician Pho Duc Phuong, Director of VCPMC said that the presence of this website is part of efforts made by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Vietnam Association of Musicians, aiming to encourage the use of copyrighted musical products in the country.

In addition to a wide range of famous old-time and contemporary songs, music lovers can find out more information on composers and songs they wish to know or directly exchange with composers through the website.

As scheduled, 2,000 first songs, which meet criteria in music, lyrics and performing styles, will be posted on the website this month.

Fashion photographer raises money for Japan victims

Hai Dong, a leading fashion photographer in the country, organized an exhibition celebrating the 15th anniversary of his career, at Zen Plaza in Ho Chi Minh City.

The exhibition titled “Hai Dong and Japan” presented 100 photographs of Japan and of models taken during the last 10 years.

All photographs are printed on various materials such as cotton, silk, khaki, jean and leather with Kornit 931DS DTG printer, a new printing technology.

The exhibition is on until July 10.

All proceeds from sale of photographs will be sent to the Consulate-General of Japan in Ho Chi Minh City to support the victims of the March earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Solo exhibition by French artist in city

An exhibition featuring contemporary art works by French artist Thierry Bernard-Gotteland is being held at Quynh Gallery in District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City.

The display includes stories of heavy metal music and its spiritual values as well as the connection of heavy metal with modern music.

Thierry Bernard-Gotteland was born in 1974 in Chambéry in France. He received his MFA from the School of Fine Arts in Grenoble and a Diploma from Le Fresnoy, National Studio of Contemporary Art in Tourcoing where he worked with acclaimed artist Antoni Muntadas.

Bernard-Gotteland has exhibited in North America, Europe and Asia. Recent exhibitions include To Ho Chi Minh City with Love: A Social Sculpture – a project by Phong Bui, the sound performance at The Cage gallery in Ho Chi Minh City.

The artist is also a lecturer at the design department at RMIT University in Ho Chi Minh City. He lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City.

The exhibition will run until July 30 at 65, De Tham Street.

Miss Ethnic winners to compete in international contest

The top three winners of the 2nd Miss Ethnic Vietnamese 2011 pageant will represent Vietnam in international beauty contests in 2012, according to the organizers International Advertising and Trade Fair Company (CIAT) and the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs.

The beauty pageant aims to honor women’s traditional values, beauty, talent and intelligence as well as strengthen solidarity amongst ethnic minority groups.

Contestants will compete with each other in a swim suit contest, a Q&A session, flower arrangement, singing, dancing, cooking, weaving, meditation and yoga.  They will also participate in social, cultural, charity and environmental protection events and visit cultural and historical sites.

The winner will receive a cash prize of VND100 million. The first and second runner-up will receive cash prizes of VND70 million and VND50 million.

The organizer will also award lesser titles including Miss HCMC, Miss Friendly, Most beautiful ethnic costume, Most beautiful body, Most beautiful face, Most beautiful skin, Most talented, Miss ao dai, Miss mountainous region, Miss tourism, Most beautiful hair and Most beautiful smile.

The final round will take place in Ho Chi Minh City from November 26 to December 10.

The final awards ceremony will be held at Hoa Binh Theater in District 10 in HCMC at 8 p.m. on December 12. The event will be broadcast live on HTV and VTV channels.

Ice-skating rink attracts local youth

The country’s only Ice Skating and Hockey Club opened last year in the Ho Chi Minh City Youth Culture House, attracting hundreds of young people every day.

The skating rink covers 425 square meters on the third floor of the Youth Culture House in District 1, is equipped with American standard equipment and maintained at a temperature of 17 degrees Celsius.

The ice-skating rink uses polymer carpet instead of ice. Players will not get hurt when they fall.

The skating rink will provide a new and exciting sport and fun activity for the local youth, said Mr. Hoang, manager of Ice Skating and Hockey Club.

The skating rink is open from 6 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. The charges per person are VND40, 000-60,000 per day.

TV series for children continue to lag

Another summer has come and young audiences of Vietnamese television may continue to be disappointed at the few film choices available to them.

Of the five TV series for audiences under 18 to be broadcast on Ho Chi Minh Television (HTV) this summer, only three cater to children.

Trang Teo, a 30-episode drama produced by Saiga Film tells a story about 10-year-old Teo who loves to reason and solve his family’s daily problems in his own way.

Phieu luu mua he (The Summer Adventure) and Nhiem vu dac biet (Special Mission) are more adventurous with city kid characters spending their summer in the countryside and discovering secrets of the place.

While the first, with 15 episodes produced by TFS, follows a group of young kids in their search for a gang of wood smugglers, the second is about a summer away from home of Kiet, a spoiled young boy who is sent to his grandparents as a cure for his online game addiction.

Despite such a modest number, the current children’s film scene on TV seems much brighter in HCMC than in Hanoi, where no new series is produced for young audiences this summer.

Explaining the problem, screenwriter Doan Truc Quynh said Hanoi TV stations don’t have many scripts for children’s films and whatever they have aren’t of good quality.

Quynh said almost no screenwriter writes children’s films for TV these days and almost all of the most successful series, Dat rung Phuong Nam (Southern Lands and Forests) to Kinh van hoa (Kaleidescope) have been adapted from literature.

A lack of professional child actors is another problem, Quynh said.

Director Dinh Duc Liem, an established named in the industry who made Vai dien dau doi (The First Role) about a young boy who loves cai luong (southern folk opera) agreed.
He said Vietnamese child actors are not professional actors and most are introduced by word of mouth or come from amateur children’s drama groups.

“This makes it very hard for us to choose our actors,” Liem said. He said it was simply pure luck that he discovered Vo Thanh Hoa, the lead actor for The First Role.

“Kids now have to study all day, their schoolwork is tremendous and there is no way their parents can let them take months off for filming,” Liem said. “Only a very few families with a real passion for this medium can allow their kids to take acting classes after school.”

Liem said training is important and it is easier to work with young actors who have some basic training, even though a natural talent is ultimately the most important asset.

For his part, Do Thanh Hai, director of the Vietnam Television Film Centre (VFC) which have produced well-received films such as Doi dac nhiem nha C21 (The Task Force of Apartment C21), said the reason there is few children’s films on TV is little demand.

“There are not many orders to make this kind of film at production companies like us,” Hai said, adding that there is also competition from other forms for young audiences such as cartoon networks, singing contests or VTV6, Vietnam Television’s youth channel.

Vietnam-Laos-Cambodia Song and Dance Festival to open

The Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has decided to organise the Song and Dance Festival of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia in Quang Tri province in July.

The ministry authorized the Performing Arts Department (PAD) to work with the Quang Tri Provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the International Cooperation Department and the Vietnam Musicians’ Association to host the event.

The ministry also asked the PAD to be responsible for developing prorgammes and training performance troupes at the festival.

The festival will provide a good chance for art troupes from the three countries to meet and exchange experience, contributing to strengthening the ties of friendship between the three countries.

Vietnamese poetry, painting introduced in France

A programme of Vietnamese poetry and a painting exhibition opened in the Vietnamese Culture Centre in France on July 2.

The poetry programme entitled “Vietnam Poetry in the 20th century” introduced works by famous poets including To Huu, Che Lan Vien and Han Mac Tu.

Literary critic Le Quang Trang gave a brief review on Vietnam’s poetry in the 20th century.

At the painting exhibition “Vietnam Homeland”, 39 paintings by Do Duc and Le Huy Tiep are on display.

Tiep works are in monotyping, engraving, screening-printing, woodcut and lithography. His woodcut paintings depicted the colourful life of Vietnamese ethnic minority groups, which are attractive to researchers and foreign visitors.

China, Laos, Vietnam engage in ‘con’ hurling festival

Jiangcheng district in China’s Yunnan province will host a traditional ‘con’ throwing festival on November 10-12 for participants from Vietnam, China and Laos.

This was announced by authorities of Vietnam’s Muong Te district in Lai Chau province and China’s Jiangcheng district at a July 2 meeting in Muong Te on the border with China.

At the meeting, the two sides agreed on the components of the festival, which will include cultural and arts activities, folk games, and cuisine from different ethnic groups, and introduce their various commercial goods.

Pham Van Thien, Vice Secretary of the Muong Te Party Committee, said the event will help develop ties of friendship and solidarity between the participating countries and strengthen cultural exchanges between ethnic groups.

Honouring Vietnam’s craft villages

The Vietnam Craft Village Association organised a ceremony to honour outstanding craft villages in Hanoi on July 2.

The event aimed to encourage craft villages and artisans to preserve and promote cultural traditions.

Nine craft villages, 47 artisans, 27 typical products and 22 businesses were honoured at the fourth annual event.

Speaking at the ceremony, Vu Quoc Tuan, Chairman of the Vietnam Craft Village Association, said the honours were based on the achievements and creativity of inviduals and collectives.

The Association aims to provide jobs for rural labourers, raise people’s living standards, and respond to the national movement to create new rural areas and realise the Government’s Resolution 11, Mr Tuan noted.

The Association has also published a book of introducing 100 outstanding artisans and their products from Vietnam’s craft villages.

Digital art comes on show in city

A painting exhibition called Thuc Ao (Real and Illusion) by the Digital Arts Club on Wednesday opened at the HCMC Association of Fine Arts.

Ten artists have contributed 24 paintings that present diverse themes and styles including expressionism, realism, symbolism and abstract in their digital style.

Paintings are large in size and promise to give visitors a lot of impression and feeling with their varied tones of colors, ideas and styles of artists.

The show runs until July 8 at the association, 218A Pasteur in District 3.

Two sites in Ben Tre recognised as National Historical Sites

The Huynh Palace in Dai Dien commune and an ancient tomb in Phu Khanh commune, Thanh Phu district, Ben Tre province, have been recognised as National Historical Sites by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

A ceremony to present the title of recognition was held on June 30 by the Ben Tre provincial Department of Culture, Sport and Tourism and the People’s Committee of Thanh Phu district.

The two constructions belonged to Huynh Ngoc Khiem (1843 - 1927), who left his hometown in the central region to settle in Ben Tre province in mid 1880s.

Covering an area of over 500 square metres, the Huynh Palace began construction in 1905 and was completed 13 years later. The three section house is supported by 80 pillars, 48 made of wood and 32 made of brick. It is decorated with characteristic patterns and motifs from the Mekong River Delta.

The house has been carefully preserved by the local authority and residents over the past century.

The ancient tomb in Phu Khanh commune, three kilometres from the palace, covers an area of over 950 square metres and was built to hold funeral observances for the palace’s owners.

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