Hat A Dao

This genre of song took shape in the 15th century and was performed at communal houses. Hat a dao gradually became a genre of chamber music much admired and appreciated by the Viet (king) in North Viet Nam.

     From its popular origin, hat a dao was praised by numerous. Confucian scholars and mandarins. Eventually, it became court music, and it acquired its noble character. The singing technique is rather refined and meticulous. Listening to a hat a dao performance, one feels that the female singer is polishing each lyric.

     Hat a dao may be regarded as the art of singing poems. There is a wide repertoire specifically designed for different occasions (ritual ceremonies, entertainment, or contests). Without a good understanding of the literary value of the songs and of the harmony between the signer and the accompanying instruments, it may be difficult to fully appreciate this art.

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