“Peace and Innovation” tour of Concert Choir and Chamber Orchestra from Phillips Exeter Academy, New Hampshire, celebrates the 20th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Vietnam.
Phillips Exeter Academy’s acclaimed Concert Choir and Chamber Orchestra travelled to Vietnam to perform concerts of classical Western music and Vietnamese folk songs. During the 14-day “Peace and Innovation” tour, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Vietnam, the ensembles partner with musicians and vocalists from the Vietnam National Academy of Music and from the Hồ Chí Minh City Conservatory of Music. Performances are held in Hà Nội, Huế, Hội An and Hồ Chí Minh City.
The 28-voice Concert Choir, under the direction of Kristofer Johnson, and the 24-person Chamber Orchestra, with conductors Peter Schultz and Rohan Smith, performs American and European selections by: Leonard Bernstein, John Philip Sousa, Scott Joplin, Dolly Parton, Mozart, Joseph Haydn, Francis Poulenc, Gabriel Fauré, Jaakko Mäntyjärvi, Arcangelo Corelli, William Billings and more. They have also prepared two Vietnamese folk songs, Trống cơmand Lý kéo chài, arranged especially for the tour by Vietnamese musician and composer Vân-Ánh Võ.
Phillips Exeter Academy’s Concert ensembles performed two concerts in Hà Nội, that were free and open to the public:
March 10, Hà Nội Chèo Theatre
PEA Choir and Chamber Orchestra opened the concert with modern American and European selections. Then actors and musicians of the esteemed Hà Nội Chèo Theatre, under the direction of Director and Favored Artist Thanh Ngoan, performed. The concert will ended with a joint performance by PEA and Chèo musicians of Đường trường duyên phận and Hề mồi thắt lưng xanh.
March 11, 2015, Vietnam National Academy of Music
Musicians from the Vietnam National Academy of Music’s Traditional Vietnamese Orchestra opened the concert with three traditional Vietnamese selections, followed by a program of European and American music by PEA’s ensembles. The concert ended with joint performances by the PEA Concert Choir and 10 singers from the Vietnam National Academy of Music: Three songs from Bernstein’s Candide and Trống Cơm.