Chamni Sripraram received his master’s in world music at Northern Illinois University, where he is now an adjunct professor teaching “Music of Southeast Asia” and “Music of Thailand” courses and directing the Thai Music Ensemble.
He has lectured, conducted workshops and given performances at higher education institutions in the U.S. including Northwestern University, DePaul University, Roosevelt University, North Park University, Kent State University, UCLA, College of DuPage and Triton College. During his time as a graduate student, he created an interactive learning website for Thai music for the Center of Southeast Asia Studies at NIU.
Ajarn Chamni, or Guru Chamni, as his students call him, started his teaching career at the Thai Temple in Chicago in 1996 as a prestigious cultural exchange scholarship recipient from Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand. During his term, he was invited to perform in New York City, Los Angeles, Houston, Kent, OH, Lexington, KY, San Diego, CA and Ottawa Canada.
Ajarn Chamni has extensive experience serving Thai and Asian American communities in the U.S. He was the president for Thai Cultural and Fine Arts Institute (TCFAI) in Chicago, a 501c3 non-profit organization, for two terms and has been TCFAI’s artistic director since its establishment, teaching Thai classical and folk music to Asian-American students and engaging in outreach programs promoting Thai culture through music and dance. Ajarn Chamni was one of the first Thai American representatives to join the Thai American Empowerment project sponsored by the Thai Embassy in Washington D.C. to visit the Thai prime minister. With the support from Thai Foreign Ministry in Summer 2017, he brought over 25 music students to perform in Thailand.
Ajarn Chamni received the Asian American Hall of Fame in 2013, Community Service Award in 2016, Asian Humanitarian Award in 2019 and the President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2019.
M.M., World Music, Northern Illinois University