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The traditional dance of Cambodia
An working paper
written by EMILY PHAM

The following paper was arranged on 15th of March, 2005 by 18 year old student Emily Pham as a senior project for school, basing on her own research and an interview held with the author of these pages, which can be read here.

1) What I want to know and why

What I want to know about Cambodian dance is, how flexibility becomes a strong point for the dancers to create the motions and steps of the dance. I want to know if stories are being told in every step? Is there a name known to address a Cambodian dancer? I also want to know if there is a background to Cambodian dance, such as who started it and what is it based on? Furthermore, I want to know how many combinations there are to Cambodian dance?                                                                                                                                                                         
By knowing the answers to these questions, I will be able to give a detailed paper and narrow the information to a certain point.

I also want to know if being able to perform traditional Cambodian dance makes some sort of difference in a person’s status in the Cambodian culture? If so, how would this affect that person in his or her community or family? Will having prior knowledge of Cambodian dance benefit a person such as me? For example, if I were just an ordinary person, living in Cambodia, and eventually learned how to dance and perform Cambodian dance well, would I be able to benefit in society with knowledge of Cambodian dance? The reason why I want to know about Cambodian dance is that I can learn the requirements. Does a dancer have to perfect the dance steps and motions in the hands and body?

By knowing information about traditional Cambodian dance, I will be able to teach others about my country and it’s traditional cultures.

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