MIV Gamelan Wokshop

January 29, 2016

‘Gamelan’ means ‘to strike with a hammer’, and is a type of music found on the Indonesian islands Java and Bali. This Monday the MIV got to play the pentatonic gamelan percussion instruments, which are tuned differently to Western instruments. We followed the Indonesian practices of taking off our shoes as a sign of respect and making sure we didn’t step over the instruments. The hammers created an unusual bite when they hit the metal or wood. After learning the core melody, we added intricate parts in the high instruments, the peking, while the gongs helped create an emphasis. The bonang, bell-like instruments, also helped to create rhythmic patterns. All the parts wove together to create an effective final composition.

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