Văn Cao

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Văn Cao
Born Nguyễn Văn Cao
(1923-11-15)15 November 1923
Hai Phong, French Indochina
Died 10 July 1995(1995-07-10) (aged 71)
Hanoi, Vietnam
Nationality Vietnamese
Occupation Composer
Known for Composing music
Notable work "Tiến Quân Ca"

Văn Cao (born Nguyễn Văn Cao, Vietnamese pronunciation: [ŋʷjə̌ˀn van kaːw]; 15 November 1923 – 10 July 1995) was a Vietnamese composer whose works include Tiến Quân Ca, which became the national anthem of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.[1][2] He, along with Phạm Duy and Trịnh Công Sơn, is widely considered one of the three most salient figures of modern (non-classical) Vietnamese music.[3] He was also a noted poet and a painter.

In 1956, after the Nhân Văn–Giai Phẩm affair, a movement for political and cultural freedom, he had to stop composing. Most of his songs, except "Tiến Quân Ca", "Làng Tôi", "Tiến Về Hà Nội" and "Trường Ca Sông Lô" were prohibited in North Vietnam. In 1987, his songs were once again authorized in Vietnam.

In 1991 the American composer Robert Ashley composed the solo piano piece Văn Cao's Meditation, which is based on the image of Văn Cao playing his piano.

List of songs and poems[edit]


  1. ^ Dale Alan Olsen Popular Music of Vietnam: The Politics of Remembering 2008 "Văn Cao" p36-37, p129-130
  2. ^ Shepherd Continuum encyclopedia of popular music of the world "Văn Cao"
  3. ^ "Trinh Cong Son’s love songs hit Hue palace". Tuổi Trẻ. 2011-03-30. Archived from the original on 2 April 2011. 

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