As the Thai Cultural Council sanctioned by the government of Thailand's Ministry of Culture, our mission is to connect the Thai-American youth to their roots through the art of music, dance, language, and performance.
The Thai Cultural Council (TCC) is located at Wat Mongkolratanaram Thai Buddhist Temple in Berkeley, CA, and offers music and dance lessons to Thai and Southeast Asian youth. Students attend Sunday afternoon lessons and more intensive classes during the summer session. All instructors are volunteers who are either permanently settled in the Bay Area or visiting summer and year-long teachers from the Rajabhat Institute at Ban Somdej Chao Phraya in Bangkok.
THAI CLASSICAL & FOLK DANCE
The Thai Cultural Center’s dance repertoire represents various styles of Thai dance, from classical to dramatic to regional. The graceful and precise classical and dramatic styles introduce students to stories from Thai history, literature and mythology that borrow largely from Hindu traditions and to the practices and customs of ancient royal courts. Through regional styles, students become familiar with the diverse choreography, music and dress associated with each of Thailand’s four regions: North, Northeastern, Central and South.
Students ideally begin studying dance from the ages of three to five, however, the center accepts beginning students of all ages. Dancers learn finger, wrist and joint stretches and warm-ups to increase flexibility. As with the study of Thai music, students practice proper signs of respect to their teachers and to dance deities.
THAI CLASSICAL & FOLK MUSIC
Music students receive one-on-one instruction and later rehearse with the full ensemble. During music lessons, students are taught the proper respect and handling of instruments. For instance, musicians learn to pay respect to instruments before and after playing, to avoid foot contact with instruments and to walk around instruments without stepping over them.
THAI LANGUAGE CLASS
The Thai Language Sunday School holds classes every week at Wat Mongkolratanaram.
10am - 12pm Thai Language for youth
1pm - 3pm Thai Language for non-native speakers
Anyone interested in enrolling in classes should inquire directly at Wat Mongkolratanaram during classes on Sunday and ask to speak with Kru Sunan, director of Thai language programming.
STAFF & FACULTY
We've got a well seasoned team of faculty and staff members committed to supporting positive cultural exchange between our audiences in the States and our traditions from Thailand.
Sunan Attana, Language Program Director
Atchara Wongsaroj, Assistant Director
Supachoke Pongtananon, Music Department Co-Chair
Somprasong Laokimpongsawat, Music Department Co-Chair
Tanatat Delokwanitkun, Dance Department Co-Chair
Aiyasara Kittivatana, Dance Department Co-Chair
Valaipid Pongtananon, Vocal Instructor
Franco N, Coordinator
Anna Kittitanaphan, Coordinator