The women’s international gamelan group at the Pondok Pekak: Intercultural Collective Music-Making and Performance in Bali, Indonesia

Jonathan McIntosh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


Balinese gamelan music stresses notions of unity, community and totality that are realized through the interaction of players and instruments. Traditionally considered a male activity, Balinese women now perform gamelan music in sacred and secular contexts. Moreover, the rise of mass tourism and an increase in the number of expatriates living in Bali now means that gamelan music has become an important site for ‘intercultural’ collective music-making. Nonetheless, little research exists concerning this emerging and significant facet of Balinese musical performance, with no studies examining intercultural musical activities of women’s gamelan ensembles. This chapter explores the collective creativity and social agency of an international women’s gamelan ensemble in Bali. Examining how this musical ensemble emerged, the micro processes of orchestral rehearsals and performances, and the relationship between traditional music and dance, this chapter extends research that has focused hitherto on the gamelan ensemble in Bali as a (primarily male) orchestral practice.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGlobal Perspectives on Orchestras
Subtitle of host publicationEssays on Collective Creativity and Social Agency
EditorsTina K. Ramnarine
Place of PublicationNew York USA
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages31
ISBN (Electronic)9780199352258
ISBN (Print)9780199352227
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameStudies in Musical Performance as Creative Practice
PublisherOxford University Press

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