Selonding is classified as an archaic type of Balinese gamelan orchestra dating as far back as the 10th century. Deeply shrouded in myth and legend, Selonding is said to have a divine origin, producing music of a heavenly quality.

Most selonding are made from iron but there are a few sets which are bronze and consist of metallophones, varying in size. Deceptive in their cumbersome and primitive appearance, the instruments produce a hauntingly beautiful sound, somewhere in between large droplets of water and low, resonant bells.

The selonding ‘heart’ of Bali is now in Karangasem where you can find sets in traditional (Bali Aga) villages: Asak, Bungaya, Bugbug, Ngis, Selat, Kayubihi, Tenganan and others. There are, however, still active traditions in Bangli, Singaraja, Gianyar and Tabanan.

Once sanctified, since some musicians from Tenganan popularised selonding and made duplicate instruments, replica sets are now played outside of the religious context. Although a number of sacred selonding pieces may not be recorded, you can now purchase recordings of selonding music but only Tenganan style.

The most popular style outside of the sacred, ritual context is Tenganan style.

Listen to this set on these platforms:

Apple Music




Watch videos on our YouTube channel.

Other Collections

In 2019, we restored and reconstructed a very unusal Angklung set from Lombok we have called ‘Semara Kirang’ because of its tuning, where it has four sweet tones with the lowest one missing.
Purchased in 2012, our first Selonding set is modelled on the Bugbug formation but with additional instruments found in the set from Merajan Selonding in the Besakih Temple complex that dates back to around the 10th century.
The Seven-tone Semara Pagulingan set in New Zealand also partly old but has a higher tuning than our one in Bali. The ensemble is both smaller in instrumentation as well as dimensions of the keys, pots and casings.
Our Six-tone Semara Pagulingan is not yet complete, as we still need to fundraise more to make the ornate wooden casings, the design of which we would like to base on the only other Six-tone Semara Pagulingan orchestra in the world.
In mediaeval Bali (circa 1600-1906) Semara Pagulingan (also known as Semar Pegulingan) was an important part of the Balinese courts.
Five-tone Semar Pegulingan
Our five-tone Semara Pagulingan set is our antique Semara Patangian set with a terompong, ponggang-kempyung, kangsi and grantang added, and the gender rambat removed.
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