RESEARCH CENTER: SBAEK THOM

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The term Sbek Thom (pronounced sbaek thom), is the largest shadow theater in Cambodia. Another one, still in use, is the Sbek Touch. The respective literal translations are “Large Leather” and “Small Leather”. One and the other are differentiated, at first glance, by the size of their screen and the dimension of the leather figures. The first one shows large fixed figures, while the second shows small articulated figurines. At the second approach, the … read more

This research project is supported by:

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About the Researcher

Patrick Kersalé

Born in 1959, Patrick Kersalé is an ethnomusicologist as well as a music archaeologist. He has spent the past twenty-five years travelling around the world (primarily in West Africa, Southeast Asia, India, Nepal and Europe) in order to seek out traditional music which where in danger of disappearing to preserve its memory and to develop programs for cultural conservation.

He is the author of numerous CDs, mostly on the music of ethnic minorities, several books with CD on oral traditions, documentaries, educational DVDs, and articles.

In Cambodia, he has carried out several missions to study the musical instruments and music of the aboriginal people of Ratanakiri and Mundolkiri. For nearly ten years, he has investigated musical instruments from the Angkorian world, through the iconography, inscriptions and archaeological objects. Based on that research, he has rebuilt extinct Angkorian instruments from the 7th to 13th centuries. Several kinds of harps, zithers, cymbals, drums, trumpets, lute and conches have thus literally been brought back to life with the collaboration of Cambodian and Nepalese makers.

Patrick Kersale

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