From Theatre to Ritual: A Study of Naphat Melody of the Khong Wong Yai.

Wednesday 22 February 2017, 4.00PM

Speaker: Decha Srikongmuang (PhD candidate, University of York)

This paper explores a number of aspects of Thai traditional music, in particular, the melodic organisation of the khong wong yai (Thai gong-kettle) and its systematic arrangement of hand techniques and musical expressivity within the ritual naphat wai khru repertoire. The Wai Khru (teacher-honouring ceremony) tradition, accompanied by naphat music, functions as a central ritual which maintains an intrinsically ‘Thai’ worldview of artists and musicians, and naphat music is regarded as having a unique cultural significance. In addition, apart from its significance within a cultural norm that Thai musicians embrace, the music itself is worthy to be taken into consideration when discussing the ontological aspects of the ‘divine aura’ within questions of expressivity in musical aesthetics.

Decha Srikongmuang is a PhD candidate in the Department of Music, University of York, supervised by Dr Daniel March.

Location: Sally Baldwin D Block D003