Alai Krathong, Thai-Brunei cultural music exchange performance
Radio Thailand and Radio Television Brunei organized a
cultural music exchange performance “Alai Krathong” at Kad Theater,
Chiang Mai, to promote the cooperation in radio broadcasting between
Thailand and Brunei Darussalam. This activity was one of the ASEAN projects
to encourage bilateral relationships.
The first performance started with “Kongla Sanan
Nanthaperi” a song composed by the Thai king “Duangjai Kab Kwam Rak”
and a song by His Royal Highness Prince Sufri Bolkiah, the younger brother
of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam.
It was attended by the director general of the Public Relation
Department, Permanent Secretary of Brunei and Thai Prime Minister’s
Offices and secretary of Brunei’s ambassador in Thailand.
known Brunei vocal performances.
cultural performances, Bai Sri Soo Kwan and Thai four regions dramatic art.
Police Officers learn English from Sanikarn Supinitch
Alastair Connon, National
Chiang Mai Governor Suwat Tantipat’s English Language
project completed the first of two courses last week. The course is tailored
towards travel and tourism, and the first session was judged a success for
the 19 police officers from departments around the region, including
Immigration, Tourist Police, Provincial Police from Sanpatong, Mae Rim, and
participating students after completion of the first course.
Each of the 60 hour courses in Basic Communicative
English is taught by Ajarn Sanikarn Supinitch, of Little Chiang Mai Co,
based at Mae Rim, teaching the “students” how to ask questions,
telephone skills, dealing with enquiries and giving advice.
The next course is for those in the tourist industry including Tuk Tuk
A Northern treasure: Kamthieng House at Siam Society in Bangkok
The Kamthieng historic house was built in 1844 on the
banks of the Ping River in Chiang Mai. Its founder was called Mae
(“Mother”) Saed and was the great granddaughter of the Prince of Chae.
The traditional house brings together many elements of lifestyle and typical
culture of that period. Constructed and passed on through the women of a
northern matrilineal clan, the house is one of the oldest surviving examples
of traditional northern Thai architecture.
old photograph of the Kamthieng House, courtesy of the Siam Society.
Nowadays, the new Kamthieng House on the grounds of the
prestigious Siam Society in Bangkok is a museum. It highlights the
traditional spirit and belief systems of the Lan Na people, within the
context of a 19th century northern Thai house.
The aim of the exhibits showcases an exposition of the
motivating ideologies of the Lan Na people, especially in terms of its
relationship with nature and the environment. Elements of lifestyle, ritual,
art and architecture are presented within the Lan Na world-view, through
objects, graphic illustrations, photographs, video and sound.
Ritual practice, as it permeated the daily life and
imagination of the Lan Na household, drew together Lan Na culture’s
intimate relationships with nature, family legacy and crafts. Natural
forces, seen and unseen, were respected, both as a way of honoring ancestral
spirits and of mediating with the spirit world. Rituals invoked both the
primal energy of the environment and personifications of the agrarian
At heart was a profound understanding of living in
harmony with nature, an ethos of sustainable inter-dependence of individual,
community and environment. According to oral traditions, the Lan Na
world-view expressed itself through well-defined beliefs and practices, most
notably in a detailed personal code of conduct - a meticulous etiquette of
interaction between people and spirits.
Exhibits of primary crafts provide a glimpse of the taste
and style of the merchant elite of the late Lan Na period, between the
lifetimes of Mae Saed and her granddaughter Mae Kamthieng - namesake of the
Through its first hundred years, the house was pitched at
a turning point in Lan Na culture, with traditional lifestyle slowly giving
way to the prestige of Western taste. But the Kamthieng House was to remain
a repository of the Lan Na spirit, even as the late Kraisri Nimmanahaeminda
moved it to the Siam Society in 1962/63 - to become a real northern Thai
ethnological museum in Bangkok.
The Siam Society was founded in 1904 during the reign of
King Chulalongkorn with the objective of researching and gathering
information on the arts and sciences of Thailand and neighboring countries.
At present, there are close to 1,800 members, many of them life members,
including both Thai and foreigners. Members and visitors can enjoy a
comprehensive and unique library and a beautiful garden oasis at 131 Asoke
Road, Sukhumvit 21, right in the heart of Bangkok.
For further information, please consult the respective web-site:
Southern Breeze from the North - to support the South
Southern Breeze is a group of Thai volunteer cultural
artistes working for charity to promote Thai culture and tourism. In
particular they are dedicated to helping tourism in Southern Thailand
recover from the tsunami crisis, combating sex tourism and presenting a
positive image of Thai womanhood.
Breeze - Thai volunteer cultural artistes working to promote Thai culture
The artistes call themselves Southern Breeze, as always
when the situation in Southern Thailand seems to get a little too hot, then
suddenly the Southern Breeze comes from nowhere to bring comfort and
refreshment to all.
Nalinta “Pui” Kittiwan, responsible designer for
Southern Breeze performances says, “I have worked as a culture actress for
9 years, and I have traveled to various countries to promote Thailand’s
tourism destinations. I therefore think that I will be able to apply my
experience and knowledge to help the situation in the South, by setting up
this project. I’m now in the process of persuading other cultural actors
and actresses who are interested in this project, without charging any fee.
Ben Svasti, who supports this project, has made arrangements in London to
facilitate our performances there to promote Thailand and the southern
The problem is not the lack of cash donations, as Thai
and international donors have been most generous. What is really hurting
them most now is the lack of tourists and other visitors who used to be the
mainstay of their day to day livelihoods. Southern Breeze realized that no
recovery from the tsunami was possible unless they could help to restore the
faith and confidence of tourists and the international community and
convince them to visit Thailand again.
Secondly, and despite the fact that tourism has
undoubtedly brought benefits to the overall economy, there is one area where
tourism has brought a negative image to Thailand, and that is the sex
trafficking of women and children. The artistes want to combat sex tourism
and promote a positive image of Thai women such as emphasizing the role of
modern Thai women as leaders, social advocates and artists. They will also
contribute any profits from their performances to charities such as the
Mudita Trust, striving to prevent child prostitution by providing
educational assistance to underprivileged, vulnerable children, and TRAFCORD
who rescue women and children from sex slavery.
The dances they perform are Contemporary Thai Folk dance
in style although they also perform dances from all regions of Thailand as
well as from neighboring countries. They have created new dances for
Southern Breeze which combine the grace and beauty of traditional Thai dance
with a modern and exciting flavor. Models in the group will be arranging
fashion shows to highlight Thailand’s exciting fashion scene. Through the
grace of Thai dance, the beauty of Thai costume and their professional
presentations on tourism subjects, they are confident they will project a
new image of Thai women.
They decided to organize a Thai Tourism Road Show to travel to countries,
such as the UK, Scotland, Germany and Holland (so far), all major source
countries for tourism to Thailand, in order to convince and charm them that
it was safe to visit Thailand and enjoy the many natural cultural
attractions it had to offer.