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date: 22 November 2019


  • Terry E. Miller


General term in Cambodia for bronze, bossed gongs. Korng alone refers to a single hanging gong (also called korng mong) used to punctuate phrases in classical music. More important are two different sets of gong chimes, each a graduated series of gongs suspended horizontally in circular rattan frames. The lower pitched version, korng vung thomm (or simply korng thomm), has 16 gongs and plays the most fundamental form of the composition; its Thai equivalent is the khawng wong yai. The higher pitched version, korng vung tauch, has 16 to 18 gongs and is only used in expanded ensembles. Its idiom is more active than the lower instrument and embellishes the fundamental structure. In both types the player sits cross-legged in the centre of the circle and enters through a gap at the rear rather than stepping over the gongs. Players usually use padded beaters, but unpadded beaters of dried buffalo hide are used for outdoor performance....

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