Ghulam-Sarwar Yousof’s Mak Yong: World Heritage Theatre, lavishly illustrated with 1970s photographs from the author’s fieldwork, is intended to alert the public and authorities to the importance of Mak Yong and its current state of endangerment, and to spur eﬀorts towards its safeguarding.
In 2005, Mak Yong was designated a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, and included in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2008. The ancient dance-theatre is believed to have originated in the province of Patani in southern Thailand and the state of Kelantan in Malaysia.
About the author: A leading specialist in traditional Southeast Asian theatre, Professor Dato’ Dr Ghulam-Sarwar Yousof (b. 1939) graduated in English from the University of Malaya (1964) and completed a Doctorate in Asian Theatre at the University of Hawai’i (1976). He is one of the world’s leading specialists of traditional Southeast Asian theatre and has written and edited more than 30 books, including the authoritative Dictionary of Traditional Southeast Asian Theatre. In recognition of his work, he was awarded the Boh Cameronian Lifetime Achievement Award (Kakiseni Malaysia) in 2008. The UNESCO listing of Mak Yong was based on the candidature file prepared by the author.
Articles from the mainstream media on Mak Yong
Mak Yong, a Unesco ‘Masterpiece’ and one of Malaysia’s oldest forms of dance-dramas (The Star, April 2020)
Mak Yong – a rich regional tradition under threat (Penang Monthly, Sept 2019)
Up Close and Personal (Penang Monthly, Sept 2019)
Kelantan’s guidelines turning Mak Yong into ‘something else’ entirely, group says (The Malay Mail, 30 Sept 2019)
‘Islamkan’ Mak Yong kalau mahu di Kelantan, kata PAS (ProjekMM, 26 Sept 2019)
Kelantan lifts Mak Yong ban after two decades, but insists performances must be Shariah-compliant (The Malay Mail, 25 Sept 2019)
Ban on Mak Yong in Kelantan lifted (NST, 25 Sept 2019)
Time running out for wayang kulit, Mak Yong? (NST, 12 Aug 2019)
Mak Yong: a rich artistic heritage (NST, 7 April 2019)