Vietnam: Tran Thu Ha

Recently, when I saw that my mother can still play the piano well at the age of 85, I understood that my biggest wish for the future is to be like her!"

— Tran Thu Ha

Born in 1949 to a family with a musical tradition, Tran Thu Ha is not only a famous and talented pianist but also a teacher and administrator. She holds a doctorate in music and has been conferred the titles, "People’s Teacher" and "Labor Hero". As Rector of the Hanoi National Conservatory of Music, she has trained several generations of outstanding teachers and pianists and opened up opportunities for cultural exchanges between Vietnam and many countries in the world.

Asked to describe her accomplishments in music, Tran Thu Ha enumerates: gestation, scientific research, teaching and performing. Ever since she was a piano student, Tran Thu Ha has performed all over her country. She has played as a soloist with different symphony orchestras such as the European Orchestra and the Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra, and has worked as a recording artist for programs produced by Voice of Vietnam and Vietnam Television, as well as for classical music tapes and CDs. Tran Thu Ha was a leading professor of piano when she was named Rector of the Hanoi National Conservatory of Music in 1996. When she took on this position, the facilities at the Conservatory were very poor. It had only a few pianos, so that many students had to share one piano, and teaching materials such as music books, discs, and tapes were rare. Under her able leadership, students began receiving international awards, the Hanoi Philharmonic Orchestra was revived, the Conservatory received applications from students in the region, and visiting professors have come from other countries. And, with international financial assistance, it was able to buy expensive musical instruments. Today, the Hanoi Conservatory is listed as one of the great conservatories in the world, a "model" for regional conservatories. If culture is one of the key fields to open exchange and integration among countries, "People’s Teacher" Tran Thu Ha has contributed much to the promotion of cultural exchange and the strengthening of Vietnam’s friendship with many countries. Her success can be traced back to her family’s deep musical tradition. She is the daughter of "People’s Artist" Thai Thi Lien, one of the founders of the Hanoi National Conservatory of Music, and the older sister of "People’s Artist" Dang Thai Son, a talented pianist who graduated from the Conservatory.

Hanoi National Conservatory of Music