American director Laura Burke and Her Latest Musical Show in Vietnam

With over 4 million foreign visitors projected to come in this year, it is quite difficult to imagine that the city has seen the lack of places for tourist to engage with the country’s cultural heritage. Hoping to change the scene, American director Laura Burke has produced a musical journey through Vietnam’s rich history, called Xin Chao!, featuring the top talents of 50 dancers, circus performers and martial artists of Ho Chi Minh City.

Online PR News – 21-February-2011 – – HCMC – Feb 21, 2011 – Living in Vietnam for 8 years, Ms. Burke who prefers to be called Lori has observed the dedication and talent of young Vietnamese in martial art, dance and circus arts. She also studied the myths and legends of Vietnam and found delightful visual stories that told so much about Vietnam’s people and culture.

For several years, foreign visitors had been wandering about what to see in Vietnam, especially Ho Chi Minh City beside famous sightseeing or historical places. They found it difficult to learn the real value of Vietnam heritage because understanding traditional arts like Cheo, Tuong, or CaiLuong is hindered by the language barrier. Compared to others famous destination such as Thai Land, Philippine, there was as much to expect, yet still lack the depth for a cultural inclination. “It was so crazy because lots of tourists come here every day,” Burke said. “I thought “they must have something to see apart from the sightseeing tours,’ but there was nowhere to go”.

Consensus has showed that young Vietnamese performers give up their gifts at an early age to work in other fields since working in the arts is not a secure position to their future. The idea was born that Laura should create a production that could tell those stories and offer young people a showcase and a way of earning a good salary doing what they love while communicating the rich stories and culture of Vietnam to the international tourists eager to learn about the country they are visiting and also Vietnamese interested in reminding themselves about the great history of their country.

Lori has been friends with traditional artists, singers and composers who have helped her to start this production in order to showcase local talents to international audiences, with Lori’s advice on developing the show. Lori has applied her film making talents in scripting the stories of Vietnam into an international appealing story line and her love of world music to compose an exciting music score that presents the instrumentation of Vietnam in a universal, theatrical music.