11 August 2008

Musical Visayans

While browsing the Asian Art Museum store, I chanced upon this tidbit in the book Early Mapping of Southeast Asia by Thomas Suárez:
That song was a part of everyday life, with the common people singing during their everyday tasks, was striking to Europeans. Francisco Alcina, visiting the Philippines in the seventeenth century, claimed that "rarely can a Visayan man or woman be found, unless he is sick, who ceases to sing except when he is asleep."

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