MUSICAL instrument makers are becoming rarer in Myanmar, and the art of woodturning is slowly declining at Kyarpaing village in Monywa Township of Sagaing Region.
Woodturning is the art of shaping wood into musical instruments, which are especially used in the Myanmar musical ensemble, Saing Waing, according to U San Maung, a woodturning artist.
“Previously, we made unfinished instruments. But now, we have to make detailed musical instruments.
Moreover, we are facing difficulty in terms of input costs and finding timber. Additionally, young people are not interested in woodturning, and the art may fade in our village. Currently, I am the only one who is making instruments in our village,” he added.
Woodturning is among the ten Myanmar traditional arts. There were four woodturning artists in Kyarpaing village, but now, artists have become scarce due to difficulties in sourcing raw materials and lack of youngsters willing to carry the art forward. —Win Oo (Zayyar Tine) (Translated by La Wonn)