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Musical Explanation and Structural Analysis: Symphonic Tribute to the Late King Composed by Damrih Banawitayakit

Paper Presentation
26 August 2021
09:00 - 09:30 hrs (GMT+7)

Jiradej Setabundhu



Damrih Banawitayakit


Symphonic Tribute to the Late King was premiered at the Thailand Cultural Center on December 18, 2018 by Feroci Philharmonic Winds and the Bangkok Music Society Chorus. The piece commemorated the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej on October 13, 2016.

At the performance, His Excellency Mr. Chuan Leekpai, the former prime minister of Thailand, was a Guest of Honor, narrator, and honorary performer. The audience consisted of approximately 1,000 people, both Thai nationals and foreign citizens, who had gathered to reminisce on the virtues of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

I revised Symphonic Tribute to the Late King to create a new version under the name of Symphonic Tribute to the Late King: Lament to the Father of Thai Nation for the Grand Winds Symphony and International Choir. The performance included 100 musicians from various communities. The performance was co-hosted by national corporations and other associations including the Department of Cultural Promotion at the Ministry of Culture, Bangkok Music Society Chorus, and the Alumni association of Silpakorn University.

Lament to the Father of Thai Nation showcases the capabilities of the Grand Winds Symphony. The piece lasts for 18 minutes and is through-composed. It has six movements performed without pause between: Lament - Mournful Farewell Procession, Yearning for Beloved Father, Remember of King’s Masterpieces, Time of Ailment, Adieu of the Dearest, and Journey to Heaven.

In working on this composition, I carefully considered the orchestration. I experimented in order to create exotic colors of sound for the wind symphony by including Thai ethnic music and by adding cello, contrabass, and a large choral ensemble. As a result, I widened the sound dimensions and sound quality. The effect is similar to that of a symphony orchestra in the late Romantic period.

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