I Love Ngoc Lan

A Brief Introduction of Ngọc Lan

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By Chris Roughan

Maria Lê Thanh Lan, stage name Ngọc Lan “Jade Orchid”, was born on 28 December 1956 in Nha Trang. Ngọc Lan was the fifth child in a well-off family. She listened to Lê Hoàng Long’s music, and occasionally performed in Nha Trang. She studied at Lý Thường Kiệt School, a suburb of Sài Gòn. She became one of the most successful and famous singers after the 1975 Fall of Sài Gòn. Her style and performances left a deep impression in the hearts of Vietnamese audiences. Her sweet face and shy, humble personality added to her popularity.

In 1980, Ngoc Lan came to the United States and settled in Minnesota. Two years later, Ngọc Lan started singing in California, the main centre of Vietnamese Music in the USA. She got the stage name Ngọc Lan because her real name Thanh Lan coincided with the famous singer Thanh Lan. With singer Duy Quang, she sang at several music cafes and performances. At first, with money short, she considered quitting her singing career, and sell hamburgers because she felt that her voice box limited how often she could sing. But with the encouragement of relatives and friends, she continued her career and reaped many unexpected successes.

Then in the 1980s and early 1990s, she accepted the invitation of the Asian Center to participate in the 15th Love Link CD which was a major breakthrough. She was also invited to tour continuously, and became the Top Female singer of the four-year festival since 1987 in the music community of the Vietnamese community across the five continents. She particularly had huge success in Australia where she constantly received beautiful pink roses from the audiences. She sang in a variety of music genres, and presented over 800 songs and over 40 video clips. The latter restricted by her shy nature in front of the camera.

After a busy period during the early 1990s, Ngoc Lan rested her career causing various rumors, she reappeared in several shows during 1994. However, after one particular concert, the audience noticed that she was somewhat depressed and her singing was less flexible than usual. Failing health had been affecting her. She married Kevin Khoa later that year, and continued to sing but not as strongly as before. In 1998, Ngọc Lan made her last appearance during the filming of the outdoor scenes for Asia to film Video 18. film Video: Remembering Sài Gòn. This was her last music video with Asia Center. After a long period of multiple sclerosis and limited vision, Ngọc Lan passed away at 8:25 am on 06 March 2001 at Vencor Hospital, Huntington Beach, Southern California. Her funeral was attended by a large crowd of fans and is said to be a funeral for the most attended artist ever. And shortly after, at least 6 songs were written to commemorate her.

Source: https://chrisroughan.webs.com/ngoc-lan

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