Music Research Seminar: Instruments of Indigeneity in the Music of the Philippines

Date & time

3.30pm 19 February 2015


Kingsland Room, Level 6
ANU School of Music


Fredeliza Campos Piper


Dr Kate Bowan
02 6125 4251
globe with headphones

Music figures prominently in both local and global representations and imaginations of identity. My dissertation will explore the instrumentality of music in challenging notions of indigeneity among peoples through the critical examination of traditional musical instruments in the Philippines. The scholastic fascination on distinctive cultural communities in regions such as Southeast Asia for well over a century prompted the accumulation of artefacts and the development of ideas on what is indigenous music. In the Philippines, large assemblages of musical instruments accompanied with rich archival data from as early as the late 19th century have been subject to a number of academic discourses that helped configure a picture of the pre-European lifestyle in the country. Globalisation and modernity, alongside other sociohistorical factors, must have largely altered if not totally erased these early musical cultures and yet, hundreds of festivities held regularly all around the archipelago feature the Filipino ‘ethnic’ culture. Employing methodologies in ethnomusicology and organology, this research will analyse a hundred years of material culture that continually identify indigenous music in the country. This study will evaluate how indigenous music is perceived, replicated, and presented to the public, and concurrently kept alive within cultural communities.

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