About Department of Music and Thai Music Division

Department of Music and Thai Music Division


Written by Assistant Professor Dr Pornprapit Phoasavadi

The Department of Music was founded in 1984 with the objective of educating and training students with an emphasis on the solid foundation of understanding the balance between theories and performances, aesthetics and functions, traditional and modern values. It offers a wide array of undergraduate and graduate studies, including a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Arts in Thai classical music performance.  Most importantly, ethical considerations are of the key elements being reinforced in the programme. The Department of Music consists of two majors: Thai music and Western music. The programme serves approximately 120 undergraduate music majors, 60 graduate students, and over 300 non-major students who enrol in music courses each semester.     


Currently, the Department offers four programmes: undergraduate degree majoring in Thai music, undergraduate degree majoring in Western music performance, a Master degree in Thai music, and a Master degree in Western music composition, and a DFA degree in both Thai and Western music.


Urban Research Plaza: The Thai Music Division has established the Urban Research Plaza in collaboration with Osaka City University where the office is located at the Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Chulalongkorn University. In 2000, the research collaboration was concluded upon the agreement of academic exchange programme between the two universities. The project is entirely sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Science in Japan. The research collaborations are characterised with flexibility and diversity. They can be approached from various aspects, such as ethnomusicology, geography, Asian philosophy, anthropology, art management, cultural management, and so on. The recent research projects include Bangkok Living Museum which examined how art and science could contribute to the urban culture.


Centre of Excellence for Thai Music Culture Research: The creation of Thai Music Culture Research was due to the support of Chulalongkorn University.  In 2006, the Research Unit was established as a facility devoted to documentation and publication in the field of Thai Music studies and research. The Research Unit dedicated to documenting musical activities in its cultural contexts throughout Thailand and current issues of musics in Thailand, and establishing a resource centre available to students, faculty, and the public. In 2015, the Research Unit was promoted to be the Office of Excellence for Thai Music Culture. The office of Centre of Excellence for Thai Music Culture Research is located at the Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Chulalongkorn University.