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UCD Gamelan Orchestra

UCD Gamelan Orchestra

Gamelan is the ancient classical music of Indonesia, with a history stretching back almost a thousand years. It is an orchestra made up of tuned gongs and other bronze percussion instruments, with a handful of softer instruments such as the bamboo flute (suling), the two-stringed fiddle (rebab) and drums (kendhang).

Each gamelan orchestra is individually built and no two are tuned exactly alike. This gives each gamelan its own distinct personality, and it is common to give a gamelan a name and even celebrate its “birthday” on the date when it was first played.

The UCD Gamelan Orchestra was originally built  in the city of Surakarta in Central Java by Pak Mulyono in 2002. It became the first ever regular gamelan ensemble in Dublin City when the instruments were officially played by the group in their new home in UCD's Newman Building on 3rd October 2012. Since then, the instruments have been played at festivals, universities and venues across Dublin, for such special guests including the UCD Vice-President and the Indonesian Ambassador.

In 2018, UCD signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Indonesian Institute for the Arts, and has since appointed visiting artists from Indonesia to the role of UCD Gamelan Artist-in-Residence. Alumni of the UCD Gamelan Orchestra have performed at major festivals around Ireland and in Indonesia.

New students joining the UCD Gamelan Orchestra will be taught both traditional Javanese music and modern gamelan works and arrangements. Students will learn to play different instruments within the ensemble, and they are encouraged to compose and perform their own compositions. No audition is required. 

Further Information

Regular rehearsals take place on Wednesday at 5:00–7:00pm.

For further information, please contact the Artistic Director Dr Peter Moran ((opens in a new window)peter.moran@ucd.ie).

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UCD School of Music

Newman Building, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 8178 | E: music@ucd.ie