This year marked the first ever invitation for an international artist to join the Vietnam University of Military Arts and Culture, and Hani had the honor of sharing his expertise in the art of contemporary dance with a whole new community of dancers. Head of the Dance Department Miss Kieu Le Lu, an expert in traditional Vietnamese dance, invited Hani and petitioned the board of directors and head master, the well known composer Duc Triet, to grant Hani the opportunity to enter and teach at the highly secure military facility.
The 4-week program consisted of training the faculty along with giving class to 3 other levels of students from intermediate to advanced including the young choreographers’ class. Hani contributed with the implementation of a rigorous new training program and syllabus of dance technique that the school has fully integrated into its Dance program.
At the end of the program Hani directed and created an hour long presentation in a professional theatre. This presentation included choreographic work along with a live demonstration of biomechanics and training exercises used throughout the process. The event was in attendance by military directors associated with the University as well as theatre owners and government officials. The night was very successful for the school, with national media dubbing it “a great moment in time for contemporary dance in Vietnam and national security in the Military Arts and Culture board.” At the end of the process, the University presented Hani with an official government issued certificate for his contribution to Vietnamese culture and named him a cultural attaché to Vietnam.
I am beyond honored to be a part of such an amazing moment in dance for Vietnam. I think this is the beginning of a new open community within the arts in this country, and being the first to educate these dancers about my ideas and theories about an art I love so much is a dream come true.