PHNOM PENH: The long weekend saw the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts hold the Chapei Dong Veng Festival and Competition. The Chapei Dong Veng is a Cambodian traditional guitar with two strings and a long neck. It is certified by UNESCO as part of Cambodia’s “Intangible Cultural Heritage”.
Over three days, youth and experienced musicians united at the Department of Performing Arts to celebrate the traditional Khmer instrument, the Chapei Dong Veng, in a festival of competition under the theme “Youth for National Culture”.
The Chapei Dong Veng is an important part of Khmer culture. The instrument is accompanied by singing that transmits stories of Cambodia, ranging from traditional poems and Buddhist tales to satirical jokes.
The Minister of Culture and Fine Arts, Pheung Sakona, presided over the ceremony, attended by civil servants, music professors, teachers and artists. Due to Covid restrictions, members of the general public were not allowed to attend, but the festival was live-streamed on the Ministry of Culture’s Facebook page. Advisor to the Ministry of Culture, Sam Sam Ang, and the director of the department of Performing Arts, Chheang Chhadapheak, were competition judges.
First prize went to Moul Soda from Banteay Meanchey, winning a certificate and 6 million riel, followed in second place by Sary Sela from Prey Veng province, who won 4 million riel. Third place went to Pursat’s Oung Soeun, who received a prize of 2 million riel.