Grade V Celebrates World Music By Performing as a Gamelan Orchestra

Recently, Grade V students traveled to the Endicott World Music Center at MIT to play the Balinese gamelan housed there. Our hosts were Emeric Viani and Margaret Rowley, Directors of the Cambridge Youth Gamelan, who told us about the instruments and Balinese culture and taught students to play a short piece.
Students learned that in Bali, instruments are believed to house spirits, so players must never step over an instrument and must always remove their shoes so as not to bring dirt into the area where instruments are played. Students rose to the challenge of coordinating the sound of dozens of instruments. We were all amazed at the sounds of the giant gongs and at the music we were able to make together in such a short time!
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