Khmer soprano shares melodies of hope

Khmer soprano shares melodies of hope

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The smooth dulcet tones of Cambodian soprano singer Bosba Panh and other local performers wooed more than 700 people at a charity concert which celebrated Cambodia’s spiritual and cultural roots at the weekend.

Hong Minea/Phnom Penh Post
Fans watch the first screening of Bosba Panh’s 2011 Angkor Wat concert video before a live performance.

Students and families with young children packed themselves into a hall at Pannasastra University in Phnom Penh to enjoy the first screening of a traditional music concert at Angkor Wat recorded in 2011 followed by a live music performance called Melodies of Hope, organized by Bosba and her parents.

Among the other local artists who performed was crowd-pleaser rapper Pou Khlaing, rock-band Animation and Tum. The concert also saw short traditional skits and a lucky draw.

Bosba, with her operatic melodies, was the star-act of the charity concert as well as the hugely successful 2011 Angkor concert, which she organised with the help of her parents.

A donation box was passed around the audience to raise funds for struggling local artists and for vocational training for children in fishing villages in Bak Prear and Koh Pdau districts in Kratie province.

“If you don’t take action nothing is going to change,” said Bosba, who celebrates her 15th birthday today.

“If you really want to do something for your country, you just have to do it. Some people don’t have anything and you have to help them, you can’t say ‘Oh I’m so sorry’ and do nothing. You have to take action.”

Bosba’s mother Lili Sisombat said the musical and traditional performances were spiritual acts which would stay in the memories of everyone involved.

“In Asia we believe in spirits. It was really a performance for the spirits. We gave so much of our hearts,” Sisombat said. “We are very proud to do this.”

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