Then singing in the life, culture, beliefs and spirituality of the Tay, Nung and Thai ethnic groups in the northern highlands is considered a "fairy song", the song of "Heaven". This folk performing art hides and displays long-standing historical and cultural values.
Then singing often takes place in rituals, festivals and happy occasions of the ethnic people. Through cultural exchange, building a new economy, then singing is increasingly popular in localities, including Dong Nai. Song Ray commune (Cam My district) has nearly 30% of the population are Tay and Nung people from the northern mountainous provinces. Therefore, this place has many typical cultural features of ethnic minority communities.
According to the Tay people, Then means "Heaven". Then singing is a type of folk religious music performance, with the content of narrating the journey of people to heaven and asking Then for good luck and a good life. Then singing of the Tay reflects stories from life, from Muong village, to love stories, funerals, weddings… The Then worshiping and Then singing rituals of the Nung usually take place in 2 days and nights with the following contents: Ancestor worshiping ceremony, the journey to invite the Jade Emperor... During the ceremony, music is always performed with many tunes suitable for each part of the ceremony.
At the meeting on 12/12/2019 of the Intergovernmental Committee of the 2003 Convention for the Protection of Intangible Cultural Heritage of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) took place. In Bogotá, Colombia, the Then Practice heritage of the Tày, Nung, and Thai people in Vietnam was officially inscribed by UNESCO in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Not only contributing to promoting the cultural values of the nation, this type of art also creates diversity and promotes the cultural and artistic movement in the locality.