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What can young Cambodians do to preserve our Kingdom’s classical culture?

What can young Cambodians do to preserve our Kingdom’s classical culture?

Ou Monich, 19, first-year English Literature student at Cambodia International Corporation Institute
“I always try to catch any programming on classical art or music. For example, I like to listen to old Khmer songs when they’re on the TV or radio. Also, I encourage my friends who don’t support the arts to spend more time listening or watching to this kind of programming. I tell them that we need to protect our ancient national art, since we might lose it one day if we don’t work hard to appreciate it.”

Leng Channy, 24, an employee at Perfect Care
“It might sound crazy, but I take advantage of modern technology to spread knowledge of our classical heritage and art. That’s why I always share news about cultural preservation on Facebook with my friends. I have to say that from my point of view, young Cambodians are more interested in pop-culture than fine arts. Modern trends like K-pop music and styles could be a big concern in the future.”

Ngoun Soksan, 21, an employee at Great Alliances
“Although I do not have a strong interest in classical art, and my every-day surroundings don’t lend to it, I try to keep on learning about it as much as I can in my spare time. I enjoy participating in cultural festivities and holidays. When I travel, I make sure to see ancient artefacts and cultural heritage – and I always ask the guide to explain more. To keep our preservation of classical art strong, I think Cambodian youth should engage in a forum or campaign to raise awareness.”

Un Penh Sam Ath Panha, 19, second-year Law student at Royal University of Law and Economics
“I’ve loved classical art since I was young and I’m a former classical dancing student. I promote the arts by telling others about the advantages it provides. To promote youth interest, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport should add more hours devoted to the study of arts in school schedules. In addition, schools could start organising art contests in order to catch young Cambodians’ attention and encourage participation in the arts.”

Kheang Sros, 20, second-year Architecture student at Norton University
“I’m not really a fan of classical art myself, but my parents are – so I was introduced at an early age. To keep a lasting interest in classical art among Cambodian youth, we need to raise awareness. Young Cambodians should promote what they’ve learned and what they enjoy in this area. Also, there should be more access to classical art throughout the Kingdom so that everyone can enjoy it.”