Iridescent Balinese Gamelan and Dance
Gong Tri Pitaka
A dazzling musical tradition that has stirred the western music world
The first gamelan ensemble from North Bali to perform in Hong Kong
Ever since Indonesian gamelan music was played at the Paris Expo in 1889, the shimmering sounds have had a great effect on western composers. Claude Debussy, Olivier Messiaen, Benjamin Britten, John Cage and Philip Glass are just some of those to be inspired by its pentatonic scales, cyclical melodies and interlocking patterns. Gamelan has also had an influence on rock bands, video game music, and movie / television soundtracks, most famously the score for the
Japanese animation film Akira.
One of the two major Indonesian gamelan traditions, Balinese gamelan sees dance and music as inseparable. It is distinguished by its dramatic shifts in tempo and dynamics, brilliant melodies and fast elaborations. Its innovative repertoire has also put this form of gamelan under the spotlight in the contemporary music world. North Bali's gamelan gong kebyar, literally "to burst open, as a flower", is the most dramatic of the island's gamelan styles, renowned for its high tempi and explosive bursts of sound.
Gong Tri Pitaka has previously appeared in France and the Netherlands. For its Hong Kong début, the group will perform gong kebyar repertoire from different periods and in different styles. This includes Taruna Jaya, "Victorious Youth", one of the formative dance works of kebyar, and a new work created by one of the ensemble's art directors, I Putu Putrawan, offering a comprehensive picture of Balinese gamelan's innovative sounds.