2018 marked the 20th year of Gamelan in Wales with the St David’s Hall Gamelan being the only one in Wales. The St David’s Hall gamelan arrived in Cardiff in April 1998 from the workshop of the Pak Tentram Sarwento in Java. The set, which is a complete Javanese percussion orchestra, was bought by the then St David’s Hall and New Theatre Trust (now the Arts Active Trust) with the support of a National Lottery Grant from the Arts Council for Wales. Since its arrival thousands of people of all ages and from all over have enjoyed playing and listening to the music of the St David’s Hall gamelan. School groups from all over south Wales have taken part in lively taster workshops playing together as a class often for the first time. Gamelan is accessible to all regardless of any prior musical experience and while it may take many years to master some pieces and styles it is possible for a group to be able to play a basic traditional form of piece after just a couple of hours. Cardiff university attend St David’s Hall with their university ensemble who rehearse weekly, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama have held taster workshops for their students on our gamelan and our community ensemble Cardiff Gamelan rehearse every week on Tuesday evenings.

 

Try Gamelan

Try Gamelan

Here at Arts Active we aim to encourage people, from the youngest to oldest, to engage in and enjoy arts activity. Our gamelan programme offers regular courses and workshops for people of all ages and abilities to be able to experience the inclusive nature of gamelan....

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Cardiff Gamelan

Cardiff Gamelan

Cardiff Gamelan is our community ensemble who meet regularly on Tuesday nights. Repertoire includes both traditional Javanese and western compositions for gamelan. Gamelan is a wonderfully versatile set of instruments allowing people of all ages and abilities to take...

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Schools Workshops

Schools Workshops

A taster workshop on the St David’s Hall gamelan introduces students to the music of Java. Each elaborate instrument based in St David’s Hall is made from bronze, with traditional hand finished woodcarvings. The gamelan set consists of tuned percussion,...

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