Maria Christine Muyco

  • Associate Professor, Department of Composition and Theory, College of Music, University of the Philippines
  • Philippines
    • Music/Sound Performance
    • Traditional Culture/Cultural Heritage
  • The Asia Center Fellowship Program
  • Grant Year: Fiscal Year 2016
July 01, 2016 - August 28, 2016
Country of Activity
Thailand, Laos, Malaysia, Japan

Ideologies in Asian Bird Music-Dance: Unities in Place/Motion

Bird music-dance traditions in some parts of Asia have interesting ideologies linked to place and motion. In Thailand, Garuda is a royal dance and has the King’s patronage; however, the Ginggala (half-bird, half human) of the Tai Yai (an indigenous group) has the laymen’s support. The Tai Yai’s ideology of localism transcends boundaries; they adapt and create a new sense of place. In Laos, Nouth Phouthavongsa (Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism) has a pedagogy to understand the Noi/Nok (bird) involved in music/dance. She teaches the song “A lady who is a bird” to children as a precedence to a dance lesson. In Malaysia, I located the Dayaks’ sustained bird traditions despite constant incursions of industries, logging, and deforestation. Their ideologies of belajai (going away to find one’s self) and be’iana (one root) help in understanding the rajah beuh (eagle dance). Lastly in Japan, the Ainu’s bird music-dances such as the Hantori Hunchikap has movements that portray nurturance, e.g., birds teaching their young to fly. I examined music and dance according to the Ainu’s view and spirituality linked this to their environs.

[Activity Reports]
The Royal and the Laymen Divide: Bird Music-Dances in Central Thailand as Markers of Place and Migration
Not a Peacock But a Ginggala: The Tai Yai's Mythical Human-Bird in Places and Particularities
Songs as Precedence to Dance: Understanding The Pedagogy of Learning Kinnari in Vientiane, Laos
Incursions and Sustained Malaysian Bird Dance Traditions

Main Cities of Activity
Thailand: Burapha, Chiang Mai Laos: Vientiane Malaysia: Penang, Kuala Lumpur Japan: Hokkaido, Tokyo
Host Institution(s) / Individual(s)
Sanchai Uaesilapa (Professor, Dean of Faculty of Music, Brapha University)
Khampheng Thammavongsa (Chairman, Theory and Composition Department, National School of Music and Dance)
Anis Nor (Managing Director of Nusantara Performing Arts Research Center (NusPARC))
Hokkaido Ainu Culture Research Center

Fellows related to this Grantee


Jay Flores Ticar


Glenn Fiel Fernandez

Mark Salvatus

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Janus Victoria

Countries of Activity

Asako Fujioka

Yasuno Miyauchi

柿塚 拓真

増山 士郎

Indra Menus

Ryo Hirano


Kumiko Yabu

Gardika Gigih Pradipta

Jay Flores Ticar

Tomoko Momiyama

柿塚 拓真

Nguyen Thanh Thuy