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Title: The role of music in Thai funeral rituals in contemporary Bangkok : its history, performance and transmission
Author: Poprasit, Jutamas
ISNI:       0000 0004 7426 253X
Awarding Body: SOAS, University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis focuses on the role of music in Thai funeral rituals in contemporary Bangkok, examining specifically its history, performance and transmission. The three main ensembles used in funeral ceremonies have been studied extensively in this thesis. The ensembles featured are the bua loy, piphat nanghong and piphat mon. As well as the history of the three ensembles, the thesis has also investigated each ensemble's unique repertoire of compositions, musical instruments, style of performance and transmission. The research also studies the Thai concept of death and music's purpose within the context of the Thai funeral ceremony in contemporary Bangkok, with the aim of bringing new substantive information for the benefit of the study of ethnomusicology. There is also an examination of Thai royal funeral music, with particular reference to its role in funeral ceremonies held for elite persons such as government officers. The research undertaken reveals how and why the piphat mon ensemble has usurped the traditional piphat nanghong and bua loy ensembles as the preferred music to be played for the majority of Thai people at their funeral ceremonies. The thesis considers the role played by the Royal Family, in particular HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn in preserving Thai funeral music. It also includes my commentary of two renowned music schools in Bangkok, namely Sanoduriyang and Phatthayakoson, in respect of the transmission of funeral music. The concept of huang wicha (guarding musical knowledge) and its influence on Thai funeral music is discussed. The thesis intends to bridge a gap in Western academic music research, as I have discovered that there is a paucity of information regarding this subject in both Thai and English.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral