Performance practice as compositional process : the case of HK Cantonese narrative singing Naamyam

Streaming Media


Centre for Cultural Research and Development, Lingnan University

Event Title

Voice, Instrument and Cultural Difference : Musical Practice as Research

Document Type





3:00 p.m. -- 5:00 p.m.


Online Session via Zoom


CCRD invites four distinguished Hong Kong-based speakers to share their personal journeys of experimentation with different kinds of musical practice, and to offer insights into ‘practice as research’ in music-making and performance. These diverse forms of practice as research involve voice talking to instrument, instrument reaching out to voice, and musicians being challenged by cultural difference viscerally experienced through language and melody.

In this session, Yu Siu Wah (CCRD Research Fellow) speaks from an instrumentalist’s perspective about his encounter with Cantonese narrative music.



Additional Information


Born in Hong Kong, Yu Siu Wah started as a musician in nightclubs and hotels in his early years. He started his graduate studies first at the University of Maryland of Baltimore County (1983), finished his M.A. in ethnomusicology at Queen’s University, Belfast (1985), and received his PhD in musicology from Harvard University (1996). He retired from CUHK in 2015 where he taught since 1993. His research interest ranges from musical instruments, instrumental music, Chinese music history, Chinese operas, music of the Manchus and Mongols in the Qing court, to issues of music and politics in Hong Kong. He teaches as an adjunct professor in the Cultural Studies Department at Lingnan University.

Recommended Citation

Yu, S. W. (2021, April 16). Performance practice as compositional process: The case of HK Cantonese narrative singing Naamyam [Video podcast]. Retrieved from