VietNamNet Bridge – The annual Phan Chau Trinh Culture Foundation awards for contributions to Vietnamese studies, culture, translation research and Vietnamese studies will be presented to six winners at a ceremony in Ha Noi this Saturday, according to the foundation's chairman Nguyen Ngoc.
Hoi An City Party Committee Secretary Nguyen Su received the culture and education prize for his contributions to restore national cultural heritage in Hoi An and Viet Nam.
The translation prize went to Nguyen Van Khoa for his translation of the Greek philosopher Plato's Socratic Dialogue 1, which was distributed by the Tri Thuc (Knowledge) Publishing House last year.
Music professor Tran Van Khe and linguist Nguyen Thanh Giang shared the research prize for their contributions on traditional music and literature.
Khe, 91, is popular for his research works on traditional Vietnamese music. His work has helped introduce the country's music to the world.
Giang's works on Chinese-transcribed Vietnamese literature are considered invaluable contributions to the academic community.
The 84-year-old linguist's work focused on differences between the Chinese language (Han) and the Vietnamese early language (Nom). The latter may have first appeared in the 8th century, borrowing Han script.
The Vietnamese studies prize was given to a French historian, author and cultural researcher Alain Ruscio for his research work on Indochina culture under the French war and Russian expert Pavel Vladimirovich Pozner for his work in Vietnamese studies.
The Phan Chau Trinh Culture Foundation, run by the Viet Nam Union of Science and Technology Associations, instituted the awards in 2008.
The awards honour the national hero, poet and cultural expert Phan Chu Trinh, a native of central Quang Nam Province.
Born in 1872, Chinh was a reformer who fought in the resistance movement against the French when he was very young. He devoted all of his life to the country's modernisation cause.
* French show supports Agent Orange victims
The Love of Colour, an exhibit of paintings by the late artist Suzy Cohen, is being held at the Vietnamese House in Paris as a fund-raiser for children with disabilities and victims of Agent Orange (AO) and Dioxin.
Memory lane: The Love of Colour by late artist Suzy Cohen on display in Paris.
Cohen's post-impressionist paintings harmoniously combine pointillist dots with colours to express the beauty of people and landscapes in daily life.
Several of her artworks have already been sold, and the resulting funds will be donated to the Viet Nam Association for Children Victims of AO/Dioxin in France (VNED).
VNED chairwoman Vo Thi Loan said the association had launched many charitable initiatives to support Vietnamese AO/Dioxin victims since it was established in 2001.
Since 2008, the proceeds from the association's activities have provided 231 families across Viet Nam with interest-free loans of VND7 million (US$333) each, with the help of the Red Cross and provincial and municipal chapters of the Viet Nam Association of Victims of AO/Dioxin (VAVA).
The association has granted scholarships to 328 pupils.
Cohen, who died in 2011 at the age of 86, was a French Communist who strongly opposed the war in Viet Nam. She was a pioneer of the campaign to fight for children and people with disabilities. She was known as an exuberant painter, writer and education researcher in France.
The exhibition will conclude on May 5.
* Vietnamese director scoops up Geneva film award
Cuong Ngo, director of Ngoc Vien Dong (Pearls of the Far East), will pick up the Emerging Narrative Feature Film Maker Award at the fifth Geneva Film Festival in Illinois, the US, which runs between March 29 and 31.
Pearls of the Far East centres on the love lives of seven women of differing ages, encompassing expectations and disappointment, the pureness of love and sexual passion alongside childhood and growth.
Based on the stories of Nguyen Thi Minh Ngoc, the film, launched in Viet Nam on March 8, will be screened at nearly 20 international film festivals this year. In February, it won the awards for Best Music and Best Cinematography, at the California Independent Film Festival.
Noted actors involved in the project include Truong Ngoc Anh, Nhu Quynh, Hong Anh, Ngo Thanh Van, Nguyen Thi Minh Ngoc (the writer herself) and Kieu Chinh.
The annual Geneva Festival, kicked off in 2007, offers an opportunity to young independent filmmakers to gain exposure. This year's event will include 43 movies from around the world, with Pearls of the Far East being the only Vietnamese entry.
It will be screened at 9pm local time on March 30.
* Central Binh Thuan prepares to host balloon festivities
Central Binh Thuan Province will host Viet Nam's first ever International Balloon Festival between April 26 and May 1, according to local authorities.
The event will take place on the slopes of Tieu Road in Phan Thiet City, which offers a good view and a safe landing site.
The event is expected to include 20-30 hot-air balloons, between 20 and 25m in height and 16 to 18m in diameter, from the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, France and Belgium.
The competition will take place during both day and night alongside a live music show.
If successful, the event will be held as an annual feature.
VietNamNet/Viet Nam News