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“Mongolian Piano Music: Fusion of Classical and Folk styles in the piano works of Sharav” Shuree Enkhbold

Thank you to UA Fred Fox School of Music doctoral student Shuree Enkhbold for sharing photos of her 6-week trip to the Mongolian countryside where she studied Mongolian folk music.

“Mongolian Piano Music: Fusion of Classical and Folk styles in the piano works of Sharav” Shuree Enkhbold

Sharav Byambasuren’s “Tumen ekh” piano arrangement directly quoted traditional songs from his homeland and from different ethnic groups to represent the culture of Mongolian Buryat, Zakhchin, Dörvöd, Torghut, and Khalkha residents. During my field study, I investigated the essence of the urtyn duu (long songs), ardyn duu (short songs) and bii bieleygee (biyelgee dance) by interviewing musicians and community members in the countryside and the city. Previous scholars have investigated how music changes as musicians relocate. I was inspired by Dr. Jennifer Post’s research article on Music, Musicians, Climate Change and New Mobilities in Western Mongolia in which she discusses whether nostalgia plays any role in performances in the lives of the newly urban musicians as they reflect on pastoral lives. I employed a participant-observation technique as a performer to immerse myself in some aspects of the songs. I also collected data on Sharav’s compositional style by having discussions with pianists and composers. My interest in this research was to learn about the transmission of folk songs through piano performance and how it is redefining the old process of oral transmission. I focused on the following research questions: How does a musician perform these piano arrangements with the authentic interpretation of the folk songs? Where are the boundaries between traditional and classical instrumentation when transmitting these folk songs? What are the best ways to play and promote these pieces to audiences and performers in Mongolia and English-speaking countries? The research is important for Mongolian piano music studies because it utilizes ethnomusicology methodology to study the interpretation of folk songs and transmitting through piano performances.

Shuree Enkhbold is receipt of Mongolia Field Research Fellowship. The research project is sponsored by the American Center for Mongolian Studies (ACMS), the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC), and the US Department of Education.

Research sponsor: Dr. Jennifer Post ACMS Fieldwork Fellow, 2019 Hentii and Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

Biography

Shuree Enkhbold is a Mongolian-American pianist pursuing a doctoral degree at the University of Arizona. Through a large variety of professional and creative endeavors, Shuree has expanded her horizons and redefined what it means to be a doctoral student in the arts. She recently completed her doctoral minor in Entrepreneurship at the Eller School of Management and is hoping to shape the world of classical music as an arts and cultural entrepreneur. As a Mongolian-American, she is also very interested in bringing the beauty of Mongolian culture to a wider, international audience. She recently received research funding through the ACMS for a 6-week fieldtrip to the Mongolian countryside where she will study Mongolian folk music and present it in her doctoral dissertation. Having a variety of creative interests, Shuree was featured in a documentary film titled 147 Pianos which was premiered in Chicago at CIMMFEST and scheduled to be broadcasted in Tucson Film Festival this coming October. She also produced a music video of her playing Ravel on the beaches of South Florida which you can view at her website: shureepiano.com. As a consummate classical pianist, she has won concerto competitions in 2014 and 2016 and performed with the Lynn and Mongolian Philharmonic Orchestras. She gave her debut performance at Carnegie Hall in 2016. She completed her undergraduate degree summa cum laude at age 19, received her Master of Music with distinction from DePaul University and completed a Professional Performance Certificate at Lynn Conservatory of Music. Shuree Enkhbold was receipt of Mongolia Field Research Fellowship. Her research project, “Mongolian Piano Music: Fusion of Classical and Folk styles in the piano works of Sharav”, was sponsored by the American Center for Mongolian Studies (ACMS), the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC), and the US Department of Education.


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