Cheo art preserved at Hai Duong’s middle school

(VOVWORLD) - Duy Tan middle school in Kinh Mon Town, in the Red River Delta of Hai Duong has taken a number of initiatives to encourage its students to learn and preserve Cheo (Vietnamese traditional opera). The school has set up an “I Love Folk Songs” club that now boasts 50members. The club is a place where students can learn and practice performing Cheo songs.

Cheo art preserved at Hai Duong’s middle school   - ảnh 1The students of class 8A of Duy Tan school sing Cheo during extracurricular hours. (Photo: VOV) 

The students of class 8A of Duy Tan school are so excited during extracurricular hours when Cheo is taught by trained artists. 

Cheo melodies are rich and diverse. I like singing Cheo because it helps me relax after hard school hours and learn more about our homeland,” said Tran Minh Duc.

It is essential to preserve Cheo for the later generations,” said Le Quynh Anh, Duc’s classmate.

Teacher Nguyen Thi Thuy is the one who instills Cheo into the students’ hearts and minds. Since her young years, Thuy enjoyed singing along with the folk songs she heard on the Voice of Vietnam. As a geography teacher, Thuy never imagined that she would stand on stage teaching Cheo singing to students. Thuy said that even though it is integrated into only a few class hours, the students are enthusiastic and interested.

Im very happy because my effort was supported by the schools head and the other teachers. I opened Cheo classes, organized exchanges on Cheo among local schools, and sent our students to perform at festivals,” said Thuy.

Members of “I Love Folk Songs” also help introduce and promote Cheo to their schoolmates. They wrote a number of Cheo songs based on ancient melodies, recorded the performances, and posted them on their fanpage “I Love Folk Songs” and YouTube. In this way, their Cheo performances can reach a much wider audience, according to teacher Nguyen Thi Thuy.

The most important thing is that we are able to preserve the traditional cultural values of the homeland and our locality. In our region, Kinh Mon Town is known as the cradle of Cheo. There are several Cheo stages here.”

Cheo art preserved at Hai Duong’s middle school   - ảnh 2 Duy Tan school students are also taught by professional Cheo artists. (Photo: VOV) 

Local Cheo singing clubs are invited to Duy Tan school to teach the students to perform Cheo.

The students are very excited and passionate about Cheo and actively participate in practice sessions. As a literature teacher, I apply the art of rhyming in poetry to write lyrics for songs about the school and homeland,” said Nguyen Thi Hang, a member of Duy Tan ward’s Cheo club.