MAGUNATIP AND WAYANG KULIT: THE INFLUENCE OF MALAYSIAN TRADITIONAL PERFORMING ARTS IN RAZAK ABDUL AZIZ’S 10 PANTUN SETTINGS
Razak Abdul Aziz has been writing music since in the 1980’s. His work 10 Pantun Settings is among the most frequently performed work since its complete premiere in May 2018. As this is one of the composer’s early works, Razak drew his inspirations from the environment he grew up in as his younger self, having some of the songs in this cycle influenced by Malaysian traditional music he had chanced to encounter. From my investigation, of many of these music, he had special fondness towards magunatip dance and wayang kulit, which he had transformed their idioms into musical notation with his compositional style and used as the music materials in two of the songs in his song-cycle 10 Pantun Settings. Music excerpts from these songs are used to demonstrate the transformation process mentioned. Investigation on works inspired and influenced by Malaysian traditional music should be expanded to other local composers, in line with the growing interest in researching local works among academics, gaining its rightful place in the world of academia.
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