The pinpeat (Khmer: ពិណពាទ្យ) orchestra or musical ensemble performs the ceremonial music of the royal courts and temples of Cambodia. The orchestra consists of approximately nine or ten instruments, mainly wind and percussion (including several varieties of xylophone and drums). It accompanies court dances, masked plays, shadow plays, and religious ceremonies. The pinpeat is analogous to the piphat ensemble of Thailand. 
According to Chuon Nath's Khmer dictionary, the 'pinpeat' is composed of the Sanskrit terms vina (វិណ) referring to a chapey which was formerly used as the premiere instrument in this ensemble and vadya (វាទ្យ) referring to an ensemble of instruments. Chuon Nath mentions, the term piphat was also used among Cambodians familiar with the Thai language; this can be attributed to the former annexation of the northern provinces of Cambodia.
Instruments used in pinpeat ensembles
This list presents instruments which are or have been used in various pinpeat ensembles.
- skor thom - two big drums (similar to taiko drums) played with drumsticks
- samphor - a double-headed drum played with hands
- sralai - a quadruple-reed
- sralai thom - a large quadruple-reed flute
- sralai toch - a small quadruple-reed flute
- khloy - a type of bamboo flute (was used in place of the sralai in the past)
- chhing (chhap) - finger cymbals
- krap - wooden clappers (presently rarely used)
- ^ Sam-Ang Sam "Cambodia" in New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd ed., 2001. pp. 861-863
- ^ a b Chuon Nath Khmer Dictionary. 1966, Buddhist Institute, Phnom Penh
Mon, 06 Jul 2015 23:06:06 -0700
The musical ensemble will be led by Chum Ngek, from Washington, D.C., and the type of music Ngek's instrumentalists will perform is called pinpeat - ceremonial music played in royal courts and temples in Cambodia. The four traditional dances the group ...
Sun, 21 Jun 2015 08:45:00 -0700
Nous prenons cette semaine la direction d'un pays que nous n'avons pas encore visité, le Cambodge. Nous découvrirons le pinpeat à travers la musique de théâtre et la musique rituelle, et c'est l'ethnomusicologue Stéphanie Khoury qui viendra nous en ...
Tue, 07 Apr 2015 13:58:05 -0700
The traditional Cambodian musical ensemble, or pinpeat orchestra, is made up of wind and percussion instruments, including varying pitched xylophones, circular gongs, reeds, cymbals and barrel drums. The distinctive music accompanies classical ...
Mon, 02 Feb 2015 03:37:30 -0800
... but the album's middle section – the ruminative Deepest Lake On The Planet, eerie Cardboard Castles and downright spooky Vacant Lot – take left-field harmonies, summer-of-'67 vibes and the feeling of being coaxed out of slumber at sunrise by a ...
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 10:50:31 -0700
Performances are accompanied by two narrators and a Pinpeat orchestra with nine musicians. Most of the stories and characters come from the Reamker, the Cambodian version of India's epic poem Ramayana, and require up to 160 puppets for a single ...
Wed, 28 May 2014 10:20:22 -0700
One chamber in the highest tier of Angkor Wat's central tower, known as the Bakan, contains an elaborate scene of a traditional Khmer musical ensemble known as the pinpeat, which is made up of different gongs, xylophones, wind instruments and other ...
South China Morning Post
Sat, 28 Jun 2014 10:48:46 -0700
Bordered with pretty, diamond-shaped floral motifs, one scene depicts a Khmer pinpeat, a traditional musical ensemble. Tan thinks the Bakan paintings could be relics of work undertaken to restore the temple. "Angkor Wat was built in the 12th century ...
San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Sun, 09 Jun 2013 18:17:48 -0700
For music, the choreographer supplied a recording of a traditional pinpeat orchestra. As a complement, she commissioned a gripping score from Alexis Alrich, who adapts the pentatonic scale of Cambodian music for a trio of Western instruments. The work ...
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