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Hamman Hall - Rice University
Houston, Texas
Friday January 28, 2000

Click here to see report Report about the event

Featuring Dat Nguyen, a classical guitarist

wpe4.jpg (723 bytes) Dat Nguyen's Biography wpe4.jpg (723 bytes) Bang Lang Do's Biography
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wpe4.jpg (723 bytes) Direction to Hamman Hall



Dat Nguyen - Classical GuitaristDat Nguyen was born in 1970 in Viet Nam, blind from birth and orphaned at age five. He began his music studies at age eleven, playing drums, and became interested in classical music two years later. In 1988, a friend introduced him to the recordings of Andres Segovia, and an immediate enchantment with the guitar and its music led him to decide to devote his life to studying and performing on the classical guitar.

Dat and his younger sister came to the United States in 1991 under the auspices of the ODP, since Dat's father had been an American serviceman. For the next two and a half years, Dat had little opportunity for formal study of the guitar. In 1993, still in high school, he was a prize-winning guitarist in the Disney Creativity Challenge. Later that year, he enrolled as a guitar performance major at California State University, Fullerton, under the direction of David Grimes.

In 1994, Dat won the Southern California ASTA Solo Guitar Competition, and went on to win first prize at the Califonia state finals. An extensive1995 article in the Orange County Register on his life and achievements led to many performance invitations, including a showcase at the Westminster Mall's Asian New Year's Festival in 1996. The same article also inspired a feature article subsequently published in the March, 1997 issue of the Reader's Digest.

While working to complete his college studies, Dat performs regularly for audiences throughout southern California. In November, 1996 he was presented on the Multi-Cultural Arts Series in San Juan Capistrano, where he was the first Vietnamese artist to be so recognized. He was one of the artists presented on the Guest Artist Series at Pacific Union College in November, 1997.


Dat was a California representative and a national finalist in the 1996-1997 Very Special Arts Program, sponsored by Panasonic. In April of 1997 he was the feature performer at the "Imagine This" Festival at Main Place in Santa Ana.

In June, 1997 Dat was the "headliner" for the "Informally Yetits" program at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, offering ten performances over two weeks to a variety of audiences ranging from young children to the Arts Center Founders. In July 1997, he performed in a spedal "Young Soloists Showcase" at the Orange County Performing Arts Center. He has been selected for the "From the Center" outreach program that takes artists and their music to many southland schools.

Dat has performed with the Philharmonic Society Youth Orchestra at the Orange County Performing Arts Center and at Los Angeles' Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. He has completed a Bachelor's degree in Classical Guitar Performance at Califontia State University, Fullerton (May, 1999). He performs frequently with "Inner Vision," a guitar quartet that specializes in original music with a flamenco and Latin flavor.

Dat's goal is to continue building a career as a concert guitarist, composer and teacher. He has been very active in the Southern California Vietnamese community, raising substantial funds for the Vietnamese Refugee Fund in 1996. Dat was selected by the Orange County Register as one of fifteen people representing the varied aspects of Orange County culture at the close of the millennium.

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Bang Lang DoCanadian pianist Bang Lang Do completed a doctoral degree in performance at the University of Montreal in 1998. Since 1997, she has been a full time faculty member of the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. Since her residency in the United States, she has been invited to give master classes in Quebec and Calgary and has been performing in Los Angeles and Baltimore. From 1990 to 1997, she was a regular guest for Radio Canada and C.B.C, (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation). She appeared in programs such as "Radio-Concert", "Jeunes-Artistes", "La voix du maitre", "Arts tonight' and "Music from Montreal".

Recipient of numerous grants and scholarships over the years, Bang Lang Do has also won many awards. She was finalist at the Joanna Hodges International competition in 1997, and has toured coast to coast across ten cities in Canada in 1995. In 1992, she was the grand prize winner of the "Les journees de la musique Francaise" competition and a first prize at the Stepping Stone International (Canadian Music Competition) competition. In the same year she obtained, with honours, a diploma of performance at the Royal College of Music in London, England. Following her numerous prizes in national competitions, Bang Lang Do performed in North America and Europe (France, Holland, Portugal). She received an unanimous first prize at the Conservatory of music of Quebec in Montreal in 1989 and played twice with orchestras (O.U.M. and O.C.M-), in 1994 and 1988.

Bang Lang Do's repertoire covers a vast array of styles and periods. In the past few years, she has been performing more contemporary works. She participated in the Brandon New Music Festival in 1997, playing chamber music works from Manitoban composers under the direction of Veronique Lacroix, and premiered a Canadian work by Alan Belkin in 1996 for a radio recording. She is currently interested in multidisciplinary performance with dancer.

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Copyright 1997 The Vietnamese Culture & Science Association
Last modified: February 12, 2000