Rithy Lomor Kesor is a well known singer for her work with the Small World Small Band, and also an accomplished graphic designer.

She began her interactions with the public when – as a ninth grader – she found work with a radio station.

“I began working at FM 92.7 on a programme which taught listeners how to speak English – they could call up and practice on me,” she said.

“I guess entered the music industry in stages. In 2012 I wrote and recorded my first song, I was still so young, I kind of consider it my probationary period. At that time, while music was my passion, I was working full-time as a graphic designer,” she added.

She produced her first album in 2017 and has never looked back.

“I was born into a family which is not wealthy, and have only my mother and one older sister. It was difficult to make time to earn money to support myself while studying,” she said.

Her passion and self-belief motivated her to pursue her musical dream.

“I have loved music and singing since I was a kid. Music has helped me get through difficult times, especially when I was young and my parents separated,” she said.

In addition to being a member of Small World Small Band, Lomor Kesor was also one of the 2014 founders of the Village Festival.

She created the festival, along with her sister and two friends, to showcase Khmer traditional theatre, and the spectacle of Khmer arts. The event provides a forum for artists to work together.

“It is a great programme. We talk freely and share experiences – and lessons – with each other,” she said.

“I urge young people to take the opportunity to try new things whenever they are offered. I want the younger generation to cultivate their confidence and dare to give back to society,” she added.

She hoped that modern youths would love themselves and dare to follow their passions.

“I encourage all of them to try creating original songs. Of course they should be clear and honest to their true selves, because once something has been released it cannot be taken back,” she said.

“Don’t forget to work hard to develop your skills – you can always get better, whether at composing, writing or singing. You have to keep practicing and believe that you can get better,” she added.

“Above all, we should never betray our conscience for money or fame,” she concluded.