Van-Anh Vo performs Dan Bau (Vietnamese monochord)

March 22nd, 2010

If one sound had to be chosen to evoke Vietnam, for many it would be the sound of the Dan Bau as it is one of only two traditional musical instruments of purely vietnamese origin. The word “bau” means gourd and refers to the dried gourd fastened to the handle, surrounding the string at the point where it connects to the handle. In the past this gourd may have served as a resonator, but today it survives as a decorative feature. Nowadays the Dan Bau is constructed using hardwood for a frame and softwood for the surface.

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