Preserving Folk Music in Community Cultural Events as a Method of Preserving Traditional Heritage:
A Case Study of the Ta Oi Ethnic Group in Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam
Keywords:folk music heritage, folk music in indigenous cultural festivals, folk music in life cycle events, Ta Oi people, Thua Thien-Hue, Vietnam
The Ta Oi people in Thua Thien-Hue province continue to preserve and promote numerous unique indigenous music genres. However, these invaluable cultural heritages are at risk of vanishing from their cultural life in the future if there is no comprehensive and scientifically backed protection policy in place. My first-hand fieldwork and surveys have demonstrated that folk music is integral to the Ta Oi people’s way of life, being practiced at every stage of their lives, in significant cultural events within the community, and during religious rituals. Music serves as a distinct language, fostering connections among individuals, between people, and between people and spirits within specific cultural spaces, thereby forming a remarkably distinctive cultural mosaic among the Ta Oi people. Utilizing qualitative research methods, this study focuses on conducting in-depth interviews with skilled local artisans and participating in folk music performances within the Ta Oi community. The findings of the study reveal that significant community events play a crucial role in the practice, preservation, and maintenance of the Ta Oi people’s traditional musical culture. The study asserts that preserving folk music within the cultural life of the community serves as the most effective approach to safeguarding the indigenous folk art of each distinct community. This progression would enable the maintenance of the musical heritage of each ethnic group within contemporary society. Such endeavors necessitate support from the government, researchers, and local authorities.
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