In Upper III, we have been learning about Indonesian music (Gamelan). Throughout the term, we have come across vocabularies, such as Slendro (meaning 5-note scale), Pelog (meaning 7-note scale), Saron (metallophone with 6 or 7 metal bars) and so much more!
At the end of the Gamelan topic, we got to try all the instruments, and someone who played in Gamelan ensembles in Bali came and taught us how and what to play! We also learnt some rules to consider when playing these instruments, such as taking off our shoes and socks and not stepping over the instruments.
My favourite instrument was the gong; how deep and melodious it was. Each instrument played the same notes, but at different times and levels. For example, the Saron I played had to play the notes at an average pace, but some other people who played the piece on a Bonang (“kettle gongs”) had to go 2 times faster! Something I learnt that day was that in piano, there are 7 notes (a, b, c, d, e, f & g) but in Gamelan instruments, there is no ‘f’ note!
I loved learning new skills and playing different types of instruments. The evening was very fun!
Drithi Upper IIIA