angklung at Murdock
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Balinese Gamelan Angklung Project | Image
Balinese Gamelan Angklung Project
Eight students from San Diego State University attended a workshop
in Bali as potential teachers and performers in the World Music
in the Schools project. Carl Hermanns, principal at The Museum School,
purchased a set of gamelan angklung instruments for use by children
in the school.
Nyoman Sumandhi and his wife, Ni Putu Sutiati, were recruited
as teachers for the World Music in the Schools program. Sumandhi,
a well known dalang, or puppeteer, recently retired as principal
of the High School of Performing art in Bali. Ibu Putu has been
teaching dance at the International School in Denpasar. The Sumandhis
traveled to the United States on the S.S. Universe Explorer, where,
with Center president Dr. Robert Brown, they taught gamelan angklung
and dance to students on the round the world voyage of Semester
at Sea, a floating university.
teaching program was initiated at The Museum School, with all children
receiving instruction from the Sumandhis in gamelan angklung and
Balinese dance on a twice weekly schedule (see image
gallery). The children also developed a presentation of the
Balinese monkey chant and learned some Indonesian cooking for a
final celebration (odalan) on March 24. In addition there were talks
and videos on Balinese culture four times a week and the opportunity
to learn about batik, build their own xylophone ensemble, gather
travel information, make a videotape, and create a shadow screen,
puppets and an original story for their own shadow performance.
Young Audiences an assembly program presented the Sumandhis and
assisting artists Alex Khalil, Kaori Okado, and Robert Brown in
a children's version of the Ramayana epic
story, illustrated with Balinese music, dance, and shadow puppetry.
This program went out to a number of area schools, and as far north
as Mission Viejo. The Sumandhis also presented short workshops in
music and dance at several local schools, and participated in a
number of public workshops and performances.
Several groups, including one group of San Diego teachers, attended
workshops at the Center's affiliate in Bali, the Foundation
for Traditional Arts of the World.
The Center plans to select two schools, perhaps in north and south
county areas, to begin instruction in gamelan angklung and Balinese
dance. Two sets of gamelan angklung instruments are available for
use in the program, with preference given to those schools which
wish to acquire instruments of their own. Other schools will have
access to dance instruction or Balinese kecak (monkey chant), or
other aspects of the program that do not require the use of gamelan
instruments. Hands-on workshops will be arranged at venues with
instruments in place.