Italian artist to feature mouth harp in Hanoi

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A music night of mouth harp by Italian artist Mathias Esnault will take place at the Hanoi Cinematheque at 8:30 p.m. on December 19, according to an announcement on his private web site.

Mathias Esnault, 28, is a mouth harp virtuoso and a passionate collector, who plays and learns how to make the countless different types and styles of mouth harps that exist worldwide.

Starting his trip in Lakutia (Siberia), he scoured the countrysides of Mongolia, China, Laos and northern Vietnam for people who play this instrument.

The style of playing varies totally according to the instrument and its origins.

Starting from some Norwegian-Irish tunes to Chinese electronic sounds ending in a sort of Indian beatbox, his performance is a research of the new inside the old -- a way to rediscover the richness of sounds contained in one of the simplest instruments in the world.

Mathias wrote on his web site, which highlights his project on the instrument, called A travel in Asia meeting the Mouth Harp, that when he was in Vietnam's Sapa on December 14, he saw a gazebo from which came a delightful music.

"It was a funeral! As they saw me with all my equipment, they invited me to join them, offered me a cup of tea and a leaf of already prepared of betel," he said. "In the meantime I was recording the music band, made up of a dan bau (Vietnamese monochord), two Dzat (a type of primitive oboe), and two lightning drums of different size."

Tickets are priced at VND50,000.

Hanoi Cinematheque is located on 22A Hai Ba Trung Street.

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