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Connecting Our Voices (Summary)

7 September 2016

Jean-David Caillouet, Dieter Mack and Anothai Nitibhon, Curators


The old Javanese phrase “Bhinneka Tunggal Ika” translates to “Unity in Diversity”, a concept which resonates deeply with the theme of the 2016 International Symposium at PGVIM which aimed at exploring the unifying power of music within the the rich and varied cultural landscapes of the Asean. 

The first performance evening that year was centered around the 1st movement of Mozart’s K452 Quintet, a piece seen by some as symbolising the birth of musical democracy. Throughout the piece, the wind players are gradually allowed to join in with the musical conversation on an equal level with the piano. 

Using this piece as a metaphorical starting point for an engaging exploration of music as a universal language, the evening juxtaposed a variety of musical traditions, establishing musical dialogues between the hammered strings of the Thai Kim ( dulcimer) and the plucked strings of the harpsichord, between the Classical Guitar and the Malay Gambus ( lute), between the stylings of the Burmese Piano and the percussive Gamelan tones of the prepared Piano among many others. The program featured well established musicians as well as 10 young traditional musicians from the countries of Southeast Asia, the AYE (Asian Youth Ensemble) performing some pieces prepared during the Symposium’s workshops. Short poetic responses to the theme were also contributed by children from the local community of Bang Yi Khan.The performances were punctuated with archival recordings and footage as well as Southeast asian Soundscapes . Through this eclectic and colourful mix of musical styles, we took our audience on a journey, sailing to the rhythm of the tides that bring about cultural changes in our ocean of sound. 

Dr. Chanyapong Thongsawang, Harpsichord 

Dr. Kimho Ip, Yanquin 

Panicha Ponprasit, Kim 

Chamroeun Phan, Khmer Fiddle 

Bernard Lanskey, Piano 

Natthapat Kirawiroj, French Horn 

Anant Narkkong, Klui 

Tontrakul Kaewyong, Khaen 

Dieter Mack, Prepared piano 

Nemyo Aung, Piano and Voice 

Sotida Chairidchai, Voice 

Leysam Ali, Gambus 

Peerawit Aunruan, Classical Guitar 

Palut Pawaratison, Sound recording 

ธัชวงศ์ ศิริสวัสดิ์, Camera 

Jean-David Caillouet, Video editing and audio mastering

Recorded live during PGVIM’s 4th international Symposium 

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