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    Balinese Gamelan

    The word gamelan in the Balinese context is thought to originate from the word ‘magambel’ which means “to hit”. A gamelan instrument is often percussive with keyed xylophones or pot gongs made of a variety of materials, gongs of various sizes, double-headed drums and cymbals.
    However, not all Balinese gamelan instruments are percussive. There are also wind, bowed, plucked and strummed instruments.

    There are nineteen gamelan orchestras at Mekar Bhuana: one antique seven-tone semara pagulingan set, one antique semara patangian (pelegongan) set, two sets of selonding (with different tunings), six antique gender wayang sets (all with different tunings), one antique baleganjur set, one pejogedan set, genggong, three antique angklung sets (with different tunings), one gambang set, one gong bheri and one antique Javanese pelog pakurmatan set.

    Learn more about Balinese gamelan orchestras with ethnomusicologist, Vaughan Hatch, and his team of instructors by taking a workshop at Mekar Bhuana, either in Bali (not currently possible due to the covid 19 pandemic) or remotely via Skype.


    Mekar Bhuana’s Interactive Semara Pagulingan Performance at Bali Arts Festival Fascinates Balinese Public
    “Who can tell us how many different types of semara pagulingan there are in Bali,” Vaughan quizzed the audience at Mekar Bhuana’s semara pagulingan performance


    1999 – 2000 Preservation of three Pacung Village, Gianyar style gender wayang instrumental pieces. This music was taught to musicians outside of Pacung to encourage


    Searching for Sekati – the Mystery of a Balinese Gamelan thought to be Extinct
    Bali has an astounding number of different types of gamelan ensemble, and that number is growing all the time as people create new types of


    Video Publications
    In 2010, we produced the first DVD of Balinese court music ever filmed in a historic temple. This video documents rare court semara pagulingan music

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