It is my greatest pleasure to welcome you again to our annual event, the International Music Festival Phnom Penh. This year we are celebrating the 15th anniversary with the theme of "Music and Migration."

Migration occurs due to various  reasons, sometimes because of unwanted circumstances as many Cambodian have experienced. However, it also brings an unexpected blending of different cultures and certainly evolutional aspects for the arts, including music.

Among them is the Takeo-born composer Chinary Ung, a successful and internationally acclaimed composer. He has been honored with many prestigious awards.

We are proud to present his work for guitar, "Rising Spirals". The ethnomusicologist Dr. Sam-Ang Sam has been working in the Unitea States and Cambodia to preserve and reinvigorate the Khmer performing arts. He is also one of the liv1ng witnesses, who can fell how migration influences music.

I hope that you will enjoy the complexity and richness of mus1c developed under the various circumstances of migration and realize Cambodia as one of the contribu­ tors to such a development.

Phoeurng Sackona
Minister of Culture and Fine Arts

Phoeurng Sackona
Minister of
Culture and Fine Arts

I am very pleased that the European Union Delegation in Cambodia is once again supporting the International Music Festival organised in Phnom Penh by the Art plus Foundation and Mr Anton lsselhardt.

The Festival's theme this year is migration and exile - two very familiar issues in today's world. The programmes feature work by composes who for a variety of reasons left the countries where they were born, and whose world view and art reflected a dual culture and an experience of moving from one musical - and political - environment to another, sometimes very different one.

This year is the European Year of Cultural Heritage. It's a time to celebrate the diverse  cultural  heritage  that shapes our identities and everyday lives. I hope that the Festival will bring to Cambodian audiences a sense of the richness of musical culture - European, American and Cambodia - and will appeal to those who are already familiar with the western classical tradition, and to those who are new to it but would like to find out more.

George Edgar
Ambassador of the European Union to Cambodia

George Edgar
Ambassador of the
European Union to the
Kingdom of Cambodia


The United States Embassy in Phnom Penh is honored to support the 15th International Music Festival in 2018. This year coincides with the celebration of the 1ooth birth anniversary of the famous 20th Century American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein.

The festival's theme of "Music and Migration" fits perfectly with Bernstein's story and his contribution to American culture as an immigrant. Bernstein, George Gershwin and other musicians featured in the festival left their countries to forge a new life and seek new opportunities. Immi­ grants have made immense contributions to America's artistic traditions, drawing from their own cultural traditions and America's innovative, dynamic society to create some of the most recognized pieces of music in the United States in the 20th Century.

This festival presents a wonderful opportunity to showcase the contributions that foreign-born U.S. citizens have made, and Ihope you enjoy the wonderful performances that have been arranged by Festival Director Anton lsselhardt and his team.

William A. Heidt
United States Ambassador to the Kingdom of Cambodia

William A. Heidt
United States Ambassador to the Kingdom of Cambodia


This year's topic of the International Music Festival "Migration" has significantly shaped the history of mankind. People have always left their  birth places, voluntarily or involuntarily. Every country has its own stories about migration to tell.

Over the past centuries Germany and Germans have both benefitted from receiving migrants as well as beinggranted asylum or new livelihood opportunities in other countries. For artists, like the composers, whose music we are going to enjoy during the International Music Festival.

Their own migration has been a source of inspiration or a way of dealing with their displacement- thus enriching our culture in many ways.

The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany is proud to support  again  the  15th   International  Music  Festival which offers us the opportunity to appreciate the wealth of music shaped by the experiences of migrant compos­ ers. For organizing the impressive series of concerts in Phnom Penh this year I would like to thank Mr. Anton lsselhardt for his tremendous efforts and would like to wish the International Music Festival great success!

Dr. lngo Karsten
Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany
To the Kingdom of Cambodi

Dr Ingo Karsten
Ambassador of the F R of Germany


Heinrich Boll Stiftung Cambodia proudly supports the 2018 Music Festival on the topic of Music and Migration. As a foundation whose namesake was an artist himself we are committed to promote art and culture also in Cambodia.

Throughout history migration has always taken place. And musicians were amongst the migration.

The Music Festival will also include Hans Werner Henze who wrote the film music to Heinrich Boll's novei"The lost honour of Katarina Blum". Therefore Heinrich Boll Stiftung has a very special connection to this year's festival.

I personally am looking forward to the great artists who will give us insight into the music of people who changed locations and countries in search of a better world thus contributing to the world of music in a very special way.

Ali AI-Nasani
Country Director, Heinrich Boll Stiftung Cambodia

Ali AI-Nasani
Country Director
Heinrich Boll Stiftung Cambodia


Music and Migration - a broad field.

The 2018 festival introduces works by immigrant composers from 19th century onwards. The program presents an advanced perspective of their works.

Individuals, families and ethnic communities from diverse backgrounds, social milieux and geo-graphical territories have been affected by mirgation. It may take place for economic or social reasons but also as a result of suffering and forced-escape from political, ethnic or religious persecution. Many of their works are a result of blending and enriching of cultures, the old with the new.

An invaluable contribution to today's musical world. Our future is an increasingly differentiated plurality in arts, and this festival should be a small contribution to it.

Anton lsselhardt, Festival Director

Anton lsselhardt
Festival Director