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arts4peace Festival

Phnom Penh, Cambodia
November 14-24, 2019

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Unsung Heroes

The Unsung Heroes Project aimed to identify people from around the country who have dedicated their time to reviving, preserving, and developing the arts. We wish to express our gratitude for the work that they have done. We worked with nine local researchers, who traveled to every province to identify and interview artists and cultural practitioners. For the past 6 months, they have met and interviewed people who have dedicated their lives to the arts. During the festival we featured stories from 25 of the Unsung Heroes that we discovered on that journey. This exhibition was created by TAN Vatey and Sinta WIBOWO.

RIM Saosi

Province: Koh Kong
Birth Year:
Skill: Chorng Ethnic Art leader

“Ever since I was young I wanted to learn singing and dancing. We always did it at night time because it is was cooler and people are free to get together. At that time, we cooked porridge to eat together. People used bamboo to make a sound like a musical instrument. I asked them if I could play too but they did not allow me, so I made one for myself. When they danced, I applauded. And when they sang, I tried to remember some lyrics. When they sing this or that song, I know which dance belongs with it. I have collected data about songs that are used for different contexts (like when we go into the forest, we use our songs), and dance. In 2014, there was a conflict with dam construction here. There are a lot of people and organisations that inspired us that Chorng ethnic minority is good because we have our own culture and tradition. I was really inspired. So I gathered people to dance to express Chorng identity . But after that, we were forced to split up by many means. Even so I still think it is important to showcase our arts because if people come here and they want to see our arts, we can perform for them. From this, I think we can earn some money to help the community by using that money to support kids' education as well as old people.”

Researcher: SAY Tola

More Unsung Heroes

ROS Samoeurn
SEAN Sophal