Vân-Ánh Võ is an internationally renowned performer of Vietnamese traditional instruments and a rapidly emerging composer. She dedicates her life to creating music by blending the wonderfully unique sounds of Vietnamese instruments with other music genres, and fusing deeply rooted Vietnamese musical traditions with fresh new structures and compositions.
In 1995, Võ won the championship title in the Vietnamese National Đàn Tranh (Zither) Competition. Since settling in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2001, Võ has focused on collaborating with musicians across different musical genres to create new works, bringing Vietnamese traditional music to a wider audience and preserving her cultural legacy through teaching. In 2002, Võ released her first CD, Twelve Months, Four Seasons. In 2009, she released She’s Not She with award-winning composer Bảo Đỗ. In 2013, she released her third CD, Three-Mountain Pass, with the Kronos Quartet as her guest artist. This work brought positive reviews and high praises by NPR, BBC’s The World, the LA Times, and others.
Võ has acted as a collaborator and guest soloist with Kronos Quartet, Yo-Yo Ma, Southwest Chamber Music, Oakland East Bay Symphony, and a host of acclaimed jazz, rap, and world music artists. She was co-composer and arranger for Daughter from Danang (2002) which was Academy Award nominated and a Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner for Best Documentary. Võ also worked on Bolinao 52 (2008) which won Emmy® Awards for both the film and soundtrack and A Village Called Versailles (2009), winner of multiple Best Documentary and Audience Favorite awards.
She has presented her music at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, NPR, Houston Grand Opera, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, many world music festivals throughout the US, and the London Olympic Games 2012 Music Festival. She has been invited to participate as a screening judge in the world music category for both the 2015 and 2016 Grammy® Awards. In addition to the zither (đàn Tranh), Võ also performs as soloist on the monochord (đàn Bầu), the bamboo xylophone (đàn T’rung), traditional drums (trống), and many other traditional instruments.