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Khmer Classical Dance in Pop Music

Conclusion and Future Research

In conclusion, Khmer Classical Dance today seems to be associated more with Cambodia as a national heritage rather than in a ritual and spiritual context.  In addition, there seems to be a gap between Cambodians born before the Khmer Rouge and Cambodians born after the Khmer Rouge when discussing the discourse of the dance. Although both generations came to associate Classical Dance as an important Khmer identity, the older generation, especially artists, seems to feel more connected to the spirit of the dance or the ritualized essence of the dance while younger generation Cambodians came to see it as another form of entertainment that is similar to folk dance and popular dance. 

In terms of interpreting the data used in this study, not analyzing the Khmer words in the data processing part due to lack of Khmer word segmentation might have affected the results that are presented. Therefore, future research could include the study of Khmer words when processing the data in order to get a better representation.      

In addition, although historically, Classical Dance has had its moments of adaptation according to the dynamics of the society and era, it nonetheless has never been pushed to this extent. The inclusion of Classical Dance in Pop music seems to almost became another genre that is totally different from the changes that have been done in previous times. Therefore, it is a question as to how this new genre and Classical Dance would negotiate in the world of globalization where re-indigenization is starting to take place.  

As the inclusion of Classical Dance in Pop music is a new phenomenon, there is still much to understand in regard to how the future unfolds and whether this trend will continue. If the trend continues, would it be a signal of innovation of tradition, or is it a signal of the secularization of this centuries-old culture? If this trend is discontinued, the question becomes whether the current acceptance of this inclusion is simply due to the lack of understanding of the dance and the need to have a contemporary art form that is perceived as Khmer. These questions would have to be traced back to the entity that has the final words over the changes of the dance. Nonetheless, the continuity or discontinuity would provide more answers to how the younger generation make of their own culture in this globalized world.