Artists in Vancouver Learning Gamelan


The gamelan has become part of the Vancouver art community and has been played on several occasions with a coloboration between Indonesian and local artists. This is done in order to regeneration gamelan artists and revive the tradition of Javanese gamelan exercises in Vancouver (especially classical Javanese gamelan) since 2010.

Using the workshop format, gamelan training followed by 15 foreign nationals is held every Monday from January 15th to March 26th, 2018 at the Western Front, Vancouver. The event is organized by the gamelan community called Vancouver Community Gamelan Society in partnership with KJRI Vancouver.

The speaker on the training is Mr. Sutrisno Hartana who is an artist from Indonesia who has completed his Doctoral Degree in Art History and Visual Studies at the University of Victoria in Canada. He also teaches cultural arts at the School for the Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University, and the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada.

“I’m interested in learning gamelan because I have to use the feeling of playing it,” said one of the trainees, Andrew who is a local artist (music composer). According to him, playing gamelan has its own way and different from the instrument that he usually use (drum synthesizer). He was the first time to attend the class and learned a lot from each class he attended because in the training each participant will be taught to play different instruments at each session.

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