International Council for Traditions of Music and Dance

A Non-Governmental Organization in Formal Consultative Relations with UNESCO


The next Meeting of our Study Group will take place 19 -21 November 2006 in Honolulu, following the 11/19 mid-day closing of the SEM Annual Meeting. After the closing of the SEM conference at mid-day of Sunday Nov 19 our Study Group Meeting will start. It will continue through to Tuesday Nov 21, with a closing dinner around 19:00.

There are two major themes for the papers at the Study Group meeting:
a) Pacific Strings:
This theme is open to topics concerning research on 'ukulele, string bands, guitars etc., as well as presentations of particular string instruments in the Pacific. Besides information concerning construction, tuning, sound, music, etc., it would also be of interest to learn about the string bands, their music and lyrics, their role and position in society, their relation to the tourist business, etc. We hope to receive presentations from many different cultural areas of Oceania.

b) Recent and/or on-going research: papers concerning the members' recent and/or on-going researches are very much welcome, even on informal and spontaneous basis.

For Futher details please refer to the Circular letter January 2006.


Report from the ICTM Study Group on the Music of Oceania
Meeting at Koror, Republic of Belau
August 1 – 2, 2004

This is a report on the recent meeting of the Study Group on the Music of Oceania held in Palau (Belau) following the Festival of Pacific Arts. Some fifteen members participated as well as a number of local community members. As I was unable to attend, Judy Flores has kindly prepared the following summary of the meeting.
Stephen Wild

Business meeting 1: This organizational meeting was conducted by Yamaguti Osamu (Prof. Emeritus, Osaka U). An agenda was set. It was decided that a report of the meeting would be sent to Stephen Wild, chair of the SGMO (Study Group on the Musics of Oceania). The need for a regular newsletter from the chair was noted. Adrienne Kaeppler (Smithsonian) represented ICTM as Vice President. She described the procedures of ICTM and the relationship between the main committee and the study groups. She summarized the last meeting, held in Australia.

Session 1: Musics of Belau from the past to future: insiders’ and outsiders views
Chair – Konishi Junko (Shizuoka University, Japan)
Barbara Smith (Prof. Emeritus, UH) presented sounds and photos from her visit to Palau in 1963. There was much interest expressed by an invited panel of Palauan guests as named in the next session. Bilung asked if the recordings could be played to the Traditional Women’s Organization members downstairs during the lunch break, as many of them would recognize voices of singers from 1963. Bilung asked about repatriation of materials, which Dr. Smith assured them would be done as soon as the material is digitized.

Panel presentation by Palauans talked about how the Festival was organized along traditional lines of leadership, primarily by women’s organizations. The organizers were called “Team Palau”.

Bilung Gloria Salii, Queen of Koror, described methods of organizing women leaders of the 16 states.

Kathy Kesolei, Chair of Team Palau talked about the women’s conference, which kicked off the organizational activities.

Faustina K. Rehuher, Director, Belau National Museum, said that the Festival provided a time to reflect on their heritage and sense of identity. The 1980 Yap-Palau relationship was strengthened. Bilung’s duty was to teach traditional dance to the young girls and to decide how to update the dances somewhat to make them more exciting. The results were presented to and approved by the elders.

Yvonne Singeo, Festival Secretariat and Vicky Kanai, Director of the Bureau of Arts and Culture, were introduced and their roles described.

Howard Charles, Instructor, Palau Community College (also SGMO liaison) was in charge of the musical performances for Palau. He elaborated on the sponsorship/hosting of particular countries where each was assigned to one of 16 Palauan States as Sister State.

Yamaguti Osamu (Prof. Emeritus, Osaka U) presented the UNESCO policy/project of Masterpieces for Intangible Art model, explaining the nomination process of Cultural Space. He proposed that the Airai bai (the traditional locus for performance of Belauan/Palauan music and dance) be nominated. He and Adrienne Kaeppler offered to help Palau with the nomination procedures.

Session 2: Special workshop for Palauan-Ogasawaran dance communication
Chair – Yamaguti Osamu - Intro and commentaries by Konishi Junko
A dance group from Ogasawa (former Bonin Islands) presented their version of the “Mas” (march-style) Micronesian dance, which was carried on by this island since the 1930s as a result of trading communication with Micronesia. A discussion of differences and similarities in dance movements and song tune were observed with much interest, especially by Roland Tangelbad and Kathy Kesolei of Palau.

Special Session: Linda Burman-Hall (UC Santa Cruz) presented a film on childhood rituals in Bali followed by discussion looking for similarities to such in Oceania.

Session 3: Papers and informal presentations (20 minutes each were followed by 10 minutes question & answer time)
Barbara Glowesewski (CNRS, Paris) presented a website showing pathways of various aboriginal landscape/dreaming clans and clan totems as a way of showing intersections of clan groups and rights to sacred sites; the site aims to provide user-friendly access to aboriginal people; and Rosita Henry (James Cook University, Townsville), talked about reaching back through festival performances as a context for making cultural connections.

Brian Diettrich (PhD candidate, UH) presented sound samples of Chuukese music as recorded by four sources beginning in 1909. He pointed out the disjuncture between the past and present performance styles.

Katerina M. Teaiwa (UH) outlined the history of the Banaban people, whose “land moved” through the digging and distribution of phosphate from Banaba, and whose people were relocated to Rabi in Fiji, to show how such influences affect dance movement and perceptions of identity.

Session 4: Papers and informal presentations
Chair – Judy Flores (U Guam)
Helen Black (PhD candidate, ANU) focused her presentation on Lau to question whether their songs, or “Sere Usu/Polotu”, were influenced by Tongan hymns or Fijian religious meke.

Jessica De Largy Healy (PhD candidate, U Melbourne) and Joe Neparrnga Gumbula (Inaugural Fellow, U Melbourne) talked about organization of the Knowledge Center in Arnem Land, to repatriate knowledge to the aboriginal people. Joe presented a video clip he has produced to document his father, called the Djawa Project, where he juxtaposed historical ritual scenes of Djawa with contemporary ones.
The video created much interest among members.

Kirsty Gillespi (ANU) provided sound descriptions, definitions and examples of regional/language styles of storytelling from highland Papua New Guinea. She asked for feedback on the use of the word “Chant” to describe these musical constructions. Lively discussion followed, which resulted in a general agreement that the use of indigenous terms was preferred over the sometimes contested use of the word “chant”.

Judy Flores (U Guam) and Vince Reyes (Middle School Cultural Arts Teacher) presented a video documentary about intergenerational cultural arts activities between his students and masters at the Gef Pa’go Chamorro Cultural Village. Discussion focused on issues of cultural reconstruction and cultural borrowing.

Business Meeting 2: Adrienne Kaeppler and Yamaguti Osamu co-chaired the business meeting. Included in the discussion was the site for our next SGMO meeting, which focused on July or August of 2005 following the ESfO (European Society for Oceanists) meeting in Marseilles, 6-8- July, or another meeting site in Sheffield, UK, scheduled later in July (to possibly coincide with the ICTM World Conference in Sheffield, UK 3-10 August 2005).

Farewell Party: The meeting ended with an evening farewell party hosted by the Palauan Women's Organizations, featuring an abundance of traditional Palauan food, contemporary Palauan performing groups, and traditional dances from the young girls groups, women's group, and men's group. Special performances were presented by the Ogasawaran Dance Group; Howard Charles' contemporary Palauan band started the festivities and the Marshall Islands band finished out the evening.

We express our sincere thanks to our liaison, Howard Charles, for making arrangements for our SGMO meeting at the new Ngarachamayong Cultural Center and for the farewell party.
Judy Flores
Tentative Schedule of Study Group on the Musics of Oceania in Palau

1 August 2004
Barbara Smith (Professor Emeritus, University of Hawai\'i at Manoa; Former chair of the SGMO)
“Memories of music and dance in Palau in 1963”
Presentations by Palauans
Yamaguti Osamu (Professor Emeritus, Osaka University)
“Future possibilities of international cooperation for the music
culture of Belau”
A visit to BNM back-room facilities (work room, storage, etc.)
Palauan-Ogasawaran dance communication
5 or 6 Ogasawaran dancers + 2 Palauan groups

2 August 2004
10:00-12:00 Paper Session I (each 20 minutes + 10 minutes’ discussion)
Barbara Glowczewski (CNRS, Paris) and Rosita Henry (James Cook University, Townsville)
“Indigenous strategies of communication: Cultural festivals and new technologies”
Brian Diettrich (PhD Student, University of Hawaii at Manoa)
“The Repatriation and Maintenance of Sound Recordings in Chuuk State, FSM”
Katerina M. Teaiwa (School of Hawaiian, Asian and Pacific Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa)
“Culture Moves! Dance in Oceania from hiva to hip hop” (Information on a dance conference to be held in Wellington, Nov. 2005)
Linda Burman-Hall (University of California at Santa Cruz) “Kawitan: Creating Childhood in Bali” (a screening and discussion of the film)
Paper Session II (each 20 minutes + 10 minutes’ discussion)
Jessica De Largy Healy (PhD Candidate, The University of Melbourne) and Joe Neparrnga Gumbula (Inaugural Liyangarramirri Fellow, The University of Melbourne) “Dhuwalandja wayawu ga dukarr liyamanawarra manikayku gupapuynguwa: The way if the Manikay in the Djawa Legacy Project, Contemporary Approaches to Yolngu Project Management”
Kirsty Gillespie (Centre for Cross-Cultural Research, Australian National University)
“Chanted tales from highland Papua New Guinea”
Helen Black (PhD student, Australian National University)
“Sere Usu/Polotu: Fijian religious meke or Tongan hymns?”
15:00-16:00 Business meeting
Dear Colleague,

Herewith attached are further details of the Oceania Study Group meeting planned
for Canberra in September. Hope you can all come.

Stephen Wild
Organiser of Study Group Meeting



Canberra, Australia, 15-16 September 2001

Dear Members:

You are invited to attend the next meeting of the Oceania Study Group of ICTM in association with the 40th anniversary conference of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) in Canberra, Australia. The conference will also celebrate the opening of the new AIATSIS building which is co-located with the new National Museum of Australia.

Study Group members are invited also to participate in the AIATSIS conference from 18-20 September following the Study Group meeting. Details of the AIATSIS conference can be found on the AIATSIS website at Please note that there is a substantial discount for registering by the end of June.

Call for Papers and Symposia
Members are invited to submit proposals for paper presentations and symposia. A list of suggested themes is given below, but this is not intended to be exclusive. You may propose a paper/symposium on any topic of relevance to the Study Group. Members proposing a symposium on a particular subject should organise the presenters/discussants themselves. Proposals should reach me by 31 July, either by e-mail or by post c/- Canberra School of Music, PO Box 804, Canberra, ACT 2601.

Themes for the Study Group meeting are proposed as follows:

1. Music and Technology
2. Repatriation of Research Materials
3. Indigenous Festivals
4. Keeping Places, Cultural Centres, Museums and the Performing Arts
5. Christianity, Music and Dance in Oceania

1. It is suggested that participants arrive on Friday 14 September.
2. Paper presentations and symposia will take place on Saturday 15 September - Sunday 16 September.
3. Dinner with local chapter of the Musicological Society of Australia, Saturday 15 September.
4. Tour of AIATSIS and National Museum, official opening of AIATSIS building - Monday 17 September.
5. AIATSIS 40th anniversary conference, Tuesday 18-Thursday 20 September.
6. Depart from Canberra Friday 21 September.

A range of accommodation options will be posted on the AIATSIS conference website this week. To receive the quoted rates you will need to mention the AIATSIS conference and ask for the group rates. I recommend University House at Australian National University (ANU), which is walking distance to AIATSIS where our meeting will be held. The larger AIATSIS conference will be held on the ANU campus. University House has been informed of our associated meeting dates. I suggest early booking as there is likely to be heavy demand for the main conference.

The official airline for the conference is QANTAS. Conference discount is available for domestic travel only - details available on the conference website. For international travellers an advantage of using QANTAS is the ability to check in for international flights at the Canberra Airport on the return trip. Passengers on other international airlines must collect their luggage at Sydney Airport and wait in the check-in line again.

Please inform me by e-mail or post if you are planning to attend the Study Group meeting. There is no deadline, and no late fee (see below), but I would appreciate it if you tell me if you are planning to attend as soon as you are able.

I do not expect there will be a registration fee for the Study Group meeting. Participants will pay for their own accommodation, meals, etc, and the venue at AIATSIS is free to us. At most, you may be asked to contribute to the cost of morning and afternoon tea/coffee.

Stephen Wild
Organiser of Study Group Meeting