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Algerian playwright’s work on President Ho Chi Minh staged in Vietnam

The Vietnam National Drama Theatre (VNDT) on February 15 began production on the play “Người đi dép cao su” (The Man in the Rubber Sandals) by Algerian playwright Kateb Yacine.

With the support of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism’s Department of International Cooperation, Algerian Ambassador to Vietnam Mohamed Berrah visited and held a working session with the VNDT in April 2021, during which he presented the poetic drama “The Man in the Rubber Sandals” to the VNDT. He said he wished for collaboration to produce the play celebrating the 60th anniversary of Vietnam-Algeria diplomatic ties.

Yacine arrived in Vietnam in 1967 and what he saw and heard about President Ho Chi Minh and the struggle for national liberation prompted him to learn about the history, people, and beloved leader of the country. His love and respect for the Vietnamese people and Ho Chi Minh inspired his creativity. From that, the poetic play "The Man in the Rubber Sandals " was born. The play was successfully staged and performed around the world in the early 1970s but has never been staged in Vietnam.

The work consists of eight parts with about 150 characters with lines, spanning the chronological order of Vietnam's history, from the Hai Ba Trung Uprising (40 - 43 AD) through various periods of national protection struggle and President Ho Chi Minh's death in 1969. Interwoven into this main thread are dramatic events taking place in countries such as France, the US, China, and many others around the world.

VNDT Director, Meritorious Artist Xuan Bac, who directs the work, said the play is not only a poetic piece that praises the image of President Ho Chi Minh. It stands as an epic offering that vividly depicts the country and people of Vietnam throughout different historical periods. It extols the spirit of resolute and heroic struggle to protect and maintain independence in the past, at present and in the future./.