kelantan in heritage

Kelantan In Heritage

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Traditional house

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The traditional Malay house is one of the richest components of Malaysia's cultural heritage. Designed and built by the villagers themselves, it manifests the creative and aesthetic skills of the Malays. It is a near-perfect house form which is appropriate to local climatic conditions and expresses the way of life of its inhabitants. The house is extremely well designed to suit the warm and humid Malaysian climate and for the optimal and multifunctional use of space. Its design is also flexible as it caters to the widely different needs of the users and it has an addition system which allows the house to be extended to meet the growing needs of each family.

Traditional architectural forms, such as tropically-suited roofs and harmonious proportions with decorative elements are considered by traditionalists to still have relevance. However traditional buildings require significant maintenance compared to modern construction. These traditional skills are gradually being lost as Malaysia continues to the process of and industrialization.

Using renewable natural materials such as various kinds of timber and bamboo, they often constructed their dwellings without any use of metal including nails. Instead the Malays used pre-cut holes and grooves to fit the timber building elements into one another, effectively making it a ‘prefabricated house’. In Sarawak and Sabah rattan ropes were used to fasten bamboo pieces together.

Although nails had been invented and in later houses used minimally for non-structural elements (for example, windows or panels), there were benefits of structural flexibility which the rigidity of nailing inhibited. Also, without nails, a timber house could be dismantled and reconstructed in a new location.


The Wayang Kulit or Shadow play

The Wayang Kulit or shadow play is an old form of storytelling, originating in the country some 250 years ago. This theatrical entertainment seems to possess strong roots in Javanese and Hindu tradition.

The Wayang Kulit is an exciting play of lighted, the master puppeteer, or 'Tok Wayang' sits behind the back lit semi transparent screen, animating his characters, each carved intricately upon buffalo and goat parchments. These characters have swiveling arms, which allow them to express themselves through their dramatic hand actions.

The Tok Wayang modulates his voice, weaving between characters, and giving birth to a myriad of captivating personalities. The silhouettes float across the screen, telling the stories told so many years ago, each time enchanting the audience, transporting them to the kingdoms of old.

Mak yong, mounted on Saturday night, are enced by Thai tradition and providing a fine balance between singing, dancing, romance and comedy - colorful enough for outsides, though hardly fast-moving. The tok dalang manipulates the puppets (made from buffalo hide and mounted on rattan sticks) and modulates his voice to create drama and suspense.
Nowadays, Kelantan government had change the way of play from story telling by not allowed the mitos story since it is not given any benefits to people otherwise it leads to “syirik” and “khurafat” for Muslim citizen. However the story telling based on giving acknowledgement is permitted and we can see nowadays many Tok Wayang had change their way of displaying the puppet and story to attract more audiences and giving them a benefited story without diminishing an original term of Wayang Kulit.

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