When making field recordings there are many things that can interrupt a performance, however a train of small pigs was a new one for us.
We meet Ly lo may and her friends working on her traditional textiles outside of her house in Ta Phin, Sapa. Her village sits at around 2000 meters in altitude within mist-covered mountains. It’s a location so far North in Vietnam that our phones are able to connect to a Chinese network if we walk around a bit.
The group of women are Red Dao, a minority found in North Vietnam. We ask who has the best singing voice, discussing amongst themselves (many of them are chatty but shy to sing) they elect Ly lo may.
Ly lo may sings us a song about visitors and welcoming guests to Vietnam, it also includes sections about love and farming in the rice fields. The lyrics are created out of old parts and improvised sections.
She tells us that she’s working all the time. The times she is not farming or cooking food for her family she is working on her textiles. Her family consists of two boys and one girl. We ask Ly lo may if her daughter is a good singer, she thinks so, but her friend interrupts and say that she will be better when she is 10 years old.
There is no such thing as a natural end to the song it seems, and finally, Ly lo may is finished singing when she is interrupted by a notification on her phone, and she pulls out her sizeable smartphone from her smartly embroidered pockets, slyly hiding it from the view of the camera.
Written by Alex Blogg
Film Produced by Oliver Burton
Film Directed by Alex BloggSHOW LESS