The Quest for the Gongs

Living Cultures
S1:Ep951 mins2009

Ma Bio, a Chu Ru woman who lives in the mountains of southeast Vietnam, teaches the gong to the young generation of her village. She is worried because her set of gongs are old and pierced, and she knows she has to travel far to get new ones. Accompanied by her niece MaLuhin, she leaves on 400-mile journey across the mountains and countryside to meet the last gong makers of Vietnam, possessors of a unique know-how. Their first stop is in Danang, near the coast, where the two women watch the confection of a gong with great emotion. From cast iron to forge, each gesture has to be very precise and guided by the sound. Their journey will then take them to Pearl Mountain, where Mr. Kong will teach them the difficult art of tuning the instrument. They will end their trip in the Bahnar region, where they will participate in a celebration and dance to the magical sound and rhythm of the gongs.

Video Language: English