Trong Hieu on his first tour of Germany: pop star undercover

In Vietnam, Trong Hieu is a pop star; in Germany he plays in musty cultural centers in front of sometimes only 120 spectators. Why is he doing this to himself?

In the “Brotfabrik” cultural center on the outskirts of Frankfurt, Trong, 31, stands on stage and sweats. “This is one of my biggest hits in Vietnam,” he shouts into the microphone, “30 million views!”

A few days ago there was salsa night here, before that it was 50 Plus disco and before that also salsa night. The acoustics aren’t particularly good and the hall isn’t even half full, maybe 120 people came. But they scream. Trong, hair slicked back, transparent skeleton shirt, pink belt buckle, beaming.

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