Gamelan music is a traditional music style from Indonesia. The music is performed in an orchestra. Gamelan music, Batik and Wayang kulit are the most important things in Indonesian art and culture. The Gamelan is most common on Java and Bali islands. Sulawesi has its own kind of music called Kulintang and Bali has Rindik.
Indeed there are other interesting things about Indonesia. But the traditional music and puppet theatre is Indonesian culture and part of social life. The unique atmosphere and the style of music are far away from German culture. That makes the music so unique and interesting.
It’s not only the incredible music itself, but it’s also the beautifully looking instruments. Moreover, the beautiful batik costumes which the performers wearing and the whole amazing atmosphere.
An orchestra consists of different kinds of instruments and artists. The instrument players are male and the singers are female, at least in Java. The female singers are called Sinden. Some instruments look like xylophones while others look like gongs or pots. The unique music is always part of a Wayang kulit performance. Performances combined with wayang starting usually late in the night and end early in the morning.
Today gamelan orchestras play on public ceremonies, events or weddings as well. In Tuban, at each end of the year, a performance on Alun Alun was the highlight of the town’s annual anniversary. The music and the puppet theatre are big events in Tuban. It pulls always many citizens and villagers out of their houses.
All these pots, dongs and gongs look extraordinary and very special to foreign eyes. From the outside, it seems that anybody is playing his instrument without any concept. Instruments start or finish their parts suddenly. But finally, there is a crystal clear sound and inspiring music to enjoy.