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Preserving heirloom musical instruments in Thuoc Ha

TQO - In Phan Van Phu's house, village 3, Thuoc Ha, Tan Thanh commune (Ham Yen), there seems to exist a "museum" including precious instruments of the Dao people such as Pi le trumpet, gong, drum, etc.

Artist Phan Van Phu and his son-in-law study ancient books to use Dao musical instruments.

Many people say that Phan Van Phu owns a rare musical instrument set, because this is considered a "mascot" heirloom 4 generations of the Phan family, equivalent to hundreds of years old.

Phu shared that musical instruments are used in most of the human life cycle rituals such as full moon ceremony, 'cap sac' ritual, wedding, funeral, peace ceremony, and Tet holiday, etc. In total, he has 6 musical instruments. All of them are hand-made by the Phan family, accompanied by ancient books on how to make and use them.

A special set of heirloom musical instruments of the Phan family.

Currently, he has 5 hundreds of years old books on musical instruments. These are the knowledge and experience, the teachings of the Phan family about musical instruments. Each book clearly states that each instrument has a different use.

Artisan Phan Van Phu (in the middle) and his children introduce a set of heirloom musical instruments.

Besides, the preservation and storage of musical instruments is something that also needs to be strictly adhered to. After each use, wipe it with warm water, let it dry and cover it with a cloth. To show respect, the storage place must be in a high and discreet location. The Dao people often put the musical instruments together with the shaman's costumes neatly arranged in a small wooden box, carefully locked.

The Dao people believe that the more careful they are, the more their ancestors will recognize the thoughtfulness and sincerity of the owner.

Giang Lam

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