Nguyễn Thanh Thủy is a leading đàn tranh player/improviser in both traditional and experimental music. She was born into a theatre family and was raised with traditional Vietnamese music from an early age in Hà Nội. She studied at the Hanoi Conservatory of Music where she received her diploma in 1998, followed by a Master of Arts at the Institute of Cultural Studies in 2003. She has toured in Asia, Europe, the USA. She has received many distinctions including the First Prize and the Outstanding Traditional Music Performer Prize in the National Competition of Zither Talents in 1998. Nguyễn Thanh Thủy has recorded several CD’s as soloist with orchestra and solo CDs which released by Phương Nam Film Vietnam; by dB Productions Sweden; by Setola di Maiale Italia and by Neuma Records & Publications USA. She collaborates with composers such as Richard Karpen (US), Kent Olofsson (SE), Nguyễn Thiện Đạo (FR/VN) and Trần Thị Kim Ngọc (VN).
The last ten years she has been collaborating extensively with choreographers and theatre directors on many interdisciplinary projects. Between 2009 - 11, she was involved as an artistic researcher in the international research project (re)thinking improvisation, a collaboration between the Vietnam National Academy of Music and the Malmö Academy of Music. Between 2012-19 she carried out an artistic doctoral project at the Malmö Academy of Music concerned with the function of gesture in traditional Vietnamese music.
Between 2021-23 she is an international postdoctoral research fellow at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, and at the Institute of Arts, Faculty of Education Western Norway University of Applied Sciences. Her postdoc research topic is Music and identity in diaspora: new perspective on Vietnamese female immigrants in Scandinavia. The project is funded by the Swedish Research Council.