Outdoor concert a tribute to Việt Nam’s Bob Dylan

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An outdoor concert in HCM City this weekend will feature hits by late songwriter Trịnh Công Sơn. ‘The Nối Vòng Tay Lớn’ (Grand Circle of Unity) concert will be held on Sunday (April 24) at the city’s Nguyễn Huệ Pedestrian Street. Photo courtesy of the organiser

HCM CITY — Compositions by Trịnh Công Sơn, a leading light in Vietnamese contemporary music, will be performed at an outdoor concert on HCM City’s Nguyễn Huệ Pedestrian Street this weekend.

Titled Nối Vòng Tay Lớn (Grand Circle of Unity) the concert will be part of the city’s Book and Reading Culture Festival 2022 organised by the city’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism in co-operation with The Show Vietnam.

Many famous artistes including Cẩm Vân, Hồ Trung Dũng, Lê Hiếu, CeCe Trương and rapper Wowy will perform at the concert as will popular saxophonists Trần Mạnh Tuấn and An Trần.

The concert’s repertoire will include some of Sơn’s most hits like Biển Nhớ (The Sea Remembers), Ru Tình (Lullaby for Love), Huế Sài Gòn Hà Nội, and Nối Vòng Tay Lớn.

The concert will also feature young artists Nhật Linh, Lan Thy, Hoàng Hà and Avin Lu – who’ve performed lead roles in a new yet to be released biopic on the late musician.

The film Em và Trịnh (You and Trịnh), focuses on Sơn and his music in the 1960s and 1970s as well as his love life.

Director Phan Gia Nhật Linh said that the film’s producers, Galaxy Studio and its partners, spent more than VNĐ20 billion (US$860,000) on Em và Trịnh. “We hope the film will meet the approval of Sơn’s Vietnamese and foreign fans,” he said.

The film will be released in June.

Young actor Avin Lu stars as songwriter Trịnh Công Sơn in the biopic ‘Em và Trịnh’ (You and Trịnh). The film is expected to be released in cinemas this June. Photo courtesy of the producer

Born in Huế in 1939, Sơn became popular in 1957 with his first song, Ướt Mi (Misty Eyes).

His lasting legacy includes classic love songs like Diễm Xưa (Diễm, My Cherished Memory) and Ru Tình (Lullaby for Love).

Diễm Xưa is well known in Japan, where it was introduced by singer Khánh Ly in Osaka in 1970. Later, the song was written in Japanese (Utsukushii Mukashi) and was listed among Japan’s top 10 favourite love songs.

Sơn went on to become southern Việt Nam’s most famous songwriter of anti-war music collections including Ca Khúc Da Vàng (Yellow Skin Song), Kinh Việt Nam (Vietnamese Prayer), and Ta Phải Thấy Mặt Trời (We Must See the Sunlight).

Fans at home and abroad call him “Bob Dylan of Việt Nam”.

Sơn died in HCM City in 2001 after a prolonged illness.

The Nối Vòng Tay Lớn concert will begin at 7pm on Sunday, April 24. — VNS

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