Javanese Gamelan Contemporary Rhythm Resonated in Vancouver


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Javanese Gamelan indeed has won the heart of some people in Vancouver. Not long after two consecutive events initiated by the students of Simon Fraser University that demonstrated the elegance of gamelan performance during the opening of Wayang Kulit Exhibition and Spring Gamelan Concert 2016, on May 21st, 2016, the group of Canadian musician known as “Alligator Joy” gave a contemporary form of gamelan performance at Western Front, Vancouver, Canada.

During the first session of the event, the group, which consist of 10 musicians, played three repertoires of Javanese Gamelan Contemporary Rhythm. The repertoires namely “Dice Over Easy”, “Let N=N” dan “96 Tiers” are the original creation of the group. At the second session, the group performed the monologue of western puppet show with the gamelan rhythm as its background music. This part was called “Grotto: Ventriloquial Investigations” by Michael O’Neill, one of the leading musician at Alligator Joy. The whole shows of the event won high praise from around 100 audiences, majority of whom are youngsters.

Mark Parlett, one of musician and composer at the group, at his remarks, highlighted that the Alligator Joy group has been in existence since 1986 and continue to perform regularly despite each of the group members activities on daily basis. Mark Parlett himself is a entrepreneur that owns a cafe and an art gallery at Gabriola Island, BC. His interest towards gamelan began when he had the opportunity to study at ISI Surakarta, afterwards he formed a gamelan ensemble that actively played Gamelan Instrument of Madusari which donated by Indonesian Government to Simon Fraser University after the conclusion of World Expo in Vancouver, 1986.

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