Few musical instruments are used so widely on special occasions as the Cong Chieng. The gongs are more widely played by men who may use their bare hands or use wooden sticks and mallets. In order to create music, a player will need to understand how to stop sound as well as create it. Women in the Muong and some other groups do play this instrument.
There may be up to 20 gongs which make their music at festivals, funerals and weddings, celebrations and everything to do with the agriculture, planting or harvest. They are made from mixed copper and make a most impressive sight when in a long row. They range in size from 20 cm to 120 cm in diameter.
Every family aspires to own a Cong Chieng. Some are actually made from precious metals such as gold and silver.
UNESCO has recognised the Gong Culture of the Central Highlands as a Masterpiece of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Tourists often look at UNESCO’s decisions when deciding on where to go on holiday. If you travel to Vietnam, then your Vietnam tour package may well give you the chance to hear these impressive gongs for yourself.