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Saturday, October 13, 2018

INDONESIAN GAMELAN ENSEMBLE TO PLAY AT PITT-BRADFORD NOON TUNES

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford will welcome Buffalo’s premier Javanese gamelan orchestra on Oct. 18.

The Buffalo Gamelan Ensemble will present its talents at noon in the Studio Theater of Blaisdell Hall. The program will feature spirited rhythms inspired by nature’s beauty and performed on handmade instruments. The event is free and open to the public, and a light lunch will be served.

Gamelan — a word meaning “orchestra” — is an ancient art form historically cultivated in Indonesia. A gamelan ensemble features unique and exciting sounds, including giant ringing gongs, drums and mesmerizing rhythmic textures. Because of the large number of instruments needed to form a gamelan ensemble, the opportunity to see it performed live is a rare and special opportunity.

Matt Dunning, founder of the Buffalo Gamelan Ensemble, began the group’s journey in Indonesia without knowing it. He lived in Indonesia for several years practicing the traditional gamelan while simultaneously making documentaries. Eventually he left Indonesia to return to Buffalo with the passion for the gamelan that he hoped to continue playing. However, he could not afford to bring his beloved instruments back with him.

In 2015, while raising money to unite his instrument collection in the United States, Dunning began to establish a gamelan group in Buffalo with the desire to practice, teach, and share his passion for the music of Java. The group has flourished since, wowing audiences at Kleinhans Music Hall, festivals, and other venues.

As part of their residency at Pitt-Bradford, ensemble members will work with students studying global music traditions, who will have the chance to play and experience the music for themselves. The concert and workshop are sponsored in part by a grant from the Year of PittGlobal program.

For disability needs related to the concert, contact the Office of Disability Resources at 814-362-7609 or clh71@pitt.edu.

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