Vietnamese Don ca tai tu officially recognized as world intangible cultural heritage


8th UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which was held in Azerbaijani city of Baku from 2-7 December, announced that UNESCO officially recognizes Vietnamese traditional song and music Don ca tia tu as one of the eleven newly-listed intangible heritages.

Don ca tai tu is a traditional song and music which is widely sung among the Vietnamese people in the Southern part of the country. The valuable heritage has been proudly performed by the people in numerous festivals and social events such as funerals. One of the biggest characteristic of Don ca tai tu is that the music is usually performed impromptu. Don ca tai tu can change by the situation and the performer. The listeners can also interactively engage in the performance as they add lyrics and comment on it.

UNESCO decided that this element satisfies the standard as follows:

R.1: Transmitted formally and informally from generation to generation throughout 21 southern provinces, Đn ca tài t music and song are constantly recreated through cultural exchanges with diverse ethnic groups with whom it expresses mutual respect and harmony;

R.2: Inscription of the element on the Representative List could promote exchange among communities, musicians and researchers and raise awareness of the importance of the intangible cultural heritage locally and internationally;

R.3: Safeguarding measures aim at supporting transmission and teaching in communities by oral methods and in formal educational programmes; they were prepared and will be implemented with active participation of practitioners, experts and specialized institutions and with the government’s strong support;

R.4: The nomination was elaborated with the participation of community members, local authorities, specialized institutions and experts, and community members provided their free, prior and informed consent;

R.5: The element was inventoried since 2010 by the Vietnam Institute of Musicology, with participation and contribution of relevant communities, and was subsequently included in 2012 in the National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage maintained by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

Don ca tai tu became the sixth intangible heritage that Vietnam holds, and the government said that it expects the society and culture of Vietnam continues to flourish. 



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Image ⓒVietnamese Institute of Musicology

[APCEIU supporter Jung Bohyun]

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