Vũ Nhât Tân

(b. 8 August 1970, Hanoi – d. 21 July 2020, Hanoi).

Vietnamese composer of mostly orchestral, chamber and piano works that have been performed in Asia, Europe and elsewhere.

Mr. Vũ studied piano with Nhât Anh at the Vietnam National Academy of Music in Hanoi, where he earned a certificate in 1987 and degrees in secondary education in composition and musicology in 1991. He then studied composition and musicology there with Trân Trong Hung from 1991–95 and graduated with his BMus. He later studied computer music with Clarence Albertson Barlow and new music with Johannes Fritsch at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne in 2000–01, on a scholarship from the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst. In addition, he studied composition with Chinary Ung at the University of California, San Diego in 2002.

Among his honours were Premier Prix in the competition Saint-German-en-Laye (1995, for Ký Uc – Memory), four prizes from the Vietnam Composers Association in Hanoi (1998, for Ngũ Đôi Đăng Dân – Interplay of Five Instruments; 2001, for Phác Thao 2000 – Outline 2000; 2002, for Nhip Đon Nhip Kep – Simple Metre, Compound Metre; 2003, for Áo Đon Áo Kep – Four-Part Vietnamese Dress) and a grant from the Asian Cultural Council (2002, which enabled him to research contemporary music and ethnomusicology in the USA). His music has been performed in Australia, Cambodia, China, France, Germany, Mongolia, Switzerland, the USA, and Vietnam.

He was also active in other positions. He created the multimedia/performance projects Đêm Đai – Sleepless Night (2001), on a grant from the Arts Network Asia in Singapore; Chào HoiAn (2002), on a grant from the British Council in Hanoi; KhaT (2003); Space of Traditional and Contemporary Music in China (2003); on a grant from the Arts Network Asia; and Pito (2004), on a grant from the Ford Foundation. He performed on numerous occasions as a pianist and sáo (bamboo flute from Vietnam)-player in contemporary music and improvisations in Australia, China and Vietnam.

He lectured on composition and musicology at the Vietnam National Academy of Music from 1995–2020. He lectured on music from Vietnam in Australia and Vietnam.





Hát Tho – Singing Poem, 1995

Phác Thao 2000, 1999–2000

Không Gian – Space, 2000–01

Đi Vào Đi Ra – Going in...Going out, small orchestra, 2003

Gao – Rice, large orchestra, 2005


Ký Uc, flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, 2 percussion, 1993–94, revised 1995–96

Phác Thao – Esquisse, 2 flutes, alto flute, 1995

Trăng – Moon, cello, 1996

Thanh Thuy – Spring River, đàn tranh (16-string zither from Vietnam), 1998

Đông Ai – Winter Melancholy, đàn tranh, 1998 (also version for piano)

Ngũ Đôi Đăng Dân, sáo, đàn nhi (2-string bowed lute from Vietnam), đàn nguyêt (2-string moon-shaped lute from Vietnam), đàn tranh, percussion, 1998

Áo Đon Áo Kep, flute, bassoon, guitar, violin, cello, double bass, percussion, 1998–99

My Xuân – The Girl in Spring, đàn tranh, 1999 (version of work for piano)

Sáo Mo – Just a Daydream (improvisation), sáo, 1999–2000

Cologne 2000, string quartet, 2000–01

four minutes, sáo, piano, 2001

My Improvisation, sáo, violin, organ (+ synthesizer), live electronics, 2001

Graphic Notation, any number of players, 2001

Moment, any number of players, 2001

Công (improvisation), 12 percussion (c. 6 gongs, c. 6 tam-tams), 2001

Nhip Đon Nhip Kep, flute, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, 2001–02

Hoa Mua – Rain Flower, flute, guitar, 2002

Meditation and...ABC, violin, cello, 2002

Tre, 4 percussion, 2002–03

Nhi, violin, 2003

Com, sáo, sáo tiêu (bamboo flute from Vietnam, played vertically), đàn nhi, đàn nguyêt, đàn tranh, 2004, revised 2006

Xóm, any number of players, laptop, 2004

Vac – The Bittern, đàn tính (fretless gourd lute from Vietnam), laptop, 2004 (also version for laptop)

giot – drop, đàn tranh, 2005


Đoan Trăng – A Blank, 1989–96

My Xuân (improvisation), 1997 (also version for đàn tranh)

Dong Ai, 1998 (version of work for đàn tranh)

Vòng Cô – Thinking of the Past, 1998

Tránh Khác Đã – Stone Prints, 1998

Hallo, piano, metronome, 2000


bung – to flip, computer, 2005

Chòm, laptop, 2005

Vac, laptop, 2005 (version of chamber work)


Tháp Diên Điêm Vuong – The Ten Courts of the Kings of Hell (exhibition/installation/performance), 3 gongs (1 player), 4 CDs, statues (by Nguyên Manh Đúc), film (by Trân Luõng), 2003

body frame/video frame (installation), 5 dancers, đàn nguyêt, computer, film (by Rich Streitmatter-Tran), 2004

thang – bamboo ladders (installation), laptop, paintings (by Trân Hâu Yên Thê), 2005