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Nothing comes easy for actress Le Khanh
by Phan Thu

People’s Artist Le Khanh. — VNS Photo Viet Thanh
It is difficult to believe Vertical Ray of the Sun actress Le Khanh when she says that nothing comes easily to her. From drama to comedy, stage to screen, her performances have always seemed effortless.

Yet behind the facade of grace and ease lies years of hard work, and an absolute dedication to the actor’s craft.

Le Khanh was awarded the title of Emeritus Artist at the age of 34, five years earlier than her other colleagues. When she was 39, she received the even more prestigious award of People’s Artist.

Her peers and many loyal fans see these honours simply as recognition for her many contributions to the nation’s theatrical tradition. But for Le Khanh, the titles are a reason to work even harder.

Gripping: Le Khanh performs in the play Mot Nua Cuoc Doi (A Half of Life). — VNS File Photo
"My life has changed a lot since the day I received the honourable titles," Le Khanh says. "I feel so happy to see people trust and love me after my years of hard work on the stage. But along with that happiness, I feel like I owe something to others who haven’t been as lucky."

Not all artists receive the recognition they deserve, says Le Khanh. "Maybe there are people who are more talented than me, but they have no opportunity to develop their natural ability."

Obsessed with this thought, Le Khanh decided to hold a training course for young actors at the Tuoi Tre (Youth) Theatre last month. The course covered music, choreography, classic roles and theatre theory.

The participants were encouraged to learn ways of expressing inner feelings – not only with words, but through facial expressions and body language.

Le Khanh believes that many actors do not pay enough attention to body language. The ability to discard the limitations of language and express inner thoughts by physical means is the purest form of expression, she says. Neglecting this skill causes many actors to only develop half of their artistic potential.

Le Khanh has spent most of her career playing serious roles. However, not content to rest on her laurels, recently she’s been trying her hand at something new – comedy.

"I agreed to act in Doi Cuoi (Laughing Life) to test my performing skills," she explains. "All artists want to be able to play a variety of roles and have a chance to experience different styles of theatre."

It is yet another example of Le Khanh’s constant quest to become a better actress, even after years of success and acclaim.

"It is said that all artists taste success and failure, both in their careers and in life," she admits. "I sometimes find it hard to balance serious and ‘market’ works. Also, the fact that I am well-known places extra pressure on me to act well. But because audiences, family and friends give me lots of plaudits, trust and love, all I can do is try my best to repay them, and the theatre which has supported me so much on stage and in life," she concludes.

Reprinted with permission from VietNam News Agency.


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