UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Kendang tunggal : Balinese solo drumming improvisation Sudirana, I Wayan


The following thesis is an analytical investigation of Balinese solo drumming (kendang tunggal) in Balinese gamelan music. It is dealing with the solo drumming that is considered improvisational, in particular the styles that are used in the repertory of the gamelan Gong Kebyar. The analysis is culminated in chapter four with analysis of six selected recordings of influential Balinese master drummers, who represent different stages in the development of kebyar style, from its beginning to the present. The focus is on the way these drummers develop their own style or pupuh (drum patterns) within particular Balinese melodies and gong cycles. The term improvisation is carefully used, because the degree of freedom in such meters is often limited. The drummers often describe the way they play in these contexts as bebas (free), but in practice, many drummers usually do not use the opportunity to create spontaneous patterns at all, and instead recycle or reuse the patterns that they have practiced and create a new ordering of well-rehearsed stock phrases. Based on this idea, the basic analysis of solo drumming in two types of Balinese meter is introduced in chapter three that can help outsiders or beginner drummers to understand or at least to clarify how the kendang tunggal works with a certain degree of “limited improvisation” in Balinese gamelan gong kebyar music.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International