Journal of Social and Political
ISSN 2615-3718 (Online)
ISSN 2621-5675 (Print)
Published: 11 December 2019
Appraisal of the Then Belief’s Preservation in Vietnam Through a Pang Then Ritual of the Tày People in Lào Cai Province
Pham Minh Huong, Nguyen Thuy Tien
Vietnamese Institute for Musicology, Vietnam
Download Full-Text Pdf
Keywords: Then Ritual, Vietnamese Culture, Intangible Cultural Heritage, the Tày People
Vietnam has fifty-four distinct groups. Religious beliefs have always played a significant role in every Vietnamese ethnic group. Then is a form of ritual belief system of Tày, Nùng, and Thái ethnic groups in Northern Vietnam’s mountainous provinces. Then ritual practices can take place with different purposes. Each Then ritual is identified with a unique integration of music, dance, fine arts and language. In this paper, we would like to describe a Pang Then ceremony, which celebrates rank advancement of a Then master. During 3 days, the Then master sings and plays Tính Tẩu (a long-necked lute with a gourd body and two or three silk strings) at the same time. The lyric of song is narrating the path to the Realm of Heaven of the Then master and his spirited Then soldiers. At the end of the third day, all participants take part in the festivities: singing, dancing and drinking. Not only are the rituals preserved, but also the unique art of Then belief is separated. Then music and dance has eventually become a form of entertainment art in daily life. Every 2 years, a national festival of Then singing with Tính Tẩu has been organized. Some new works based on the Then original tunes is performed in these festivals.
- Ngô Đức Thịnh (2002). Then - một hình thức shaman của dân tộc Tày ở Việt Nam [The Then - a shaman ritual of Tày people in Viet Nam]. Văn hoá dân gian magazine 2002: 3, pp.3-20
- Nguyễn Thị Yên (2007). Then Tày [The Then of the Tày]. Hanoi: Văn hoá Dân tộc Publisher.
- Viện Âm nhạc (2016). Kiểm kê di sản Then Tày, Nùng, Thái Việt Nam 2016 [Inventory of the Then of Tày, Nùng, Thái minorities in Vietnam in 2016]. Hanoi: Thanh Niên Publisher
- Phạm Minh Hương and Nguyễn Thuỷ Tiên (2017). Sưu tầm Lễ Pang Nó (Then Thăng sắc) của người Tày ở huyện Văn Bàn, tỉnh Lào Cai [Collection of the Pang Nó (celebrates rank advancement) of Tay people in Văn Bàn district, Lào Cai province]. Hanoi, Vietnamese Institute of Musicology: Music and Studies, Bulletin No.52, pp. 15 - 33.
- Report of project “Urgent solutions to preserve and promote the values of traditional music of minorities in Vietnam”, implemented by researchers from Vietnamese Institute of Musicology, Hanoi, Vietnam from 2017 - 2019.