Our group is dedicated to learning and performing the mesmerising gamelan music of Central Java, Indonesia. The ensemble rehearses on a beautiful gamelan set owned by the University of Melbourne, and regularly presents musical concerts, wayang kulit (shadow puppet) and dance performance.
Gamelan music is among the most well known of the hundreds of traditional performing art forms found among the cultures that make up the Republic of Indonesia. The term gamelan refers to the entire set of instruments as well as to the music played on them or the group who plays them. The most popular form of gamelan in Central Java today is that associated with the refined cultural traditions of the royal courts. Gamelan is important in both formal ceremonies and popular entertainment and performances of gamelan are an integral part of many auspicious occasions.
Some of the instruments included in a gamelan ensemble:
Following a long period of being in limbo, MCG has finally been given the go ahead to return to Gamelan rehearsals at the University of Melbourne! Our first rehearsal back will be on Monday 28th March from 6:30pm – 8:30pm.
Double vaccination certificates will need to be sighted at your first attendance and a record of this will be kept. As is the case with all Melbournians, if you are unwell or are a close contact, you need to follow the Government guidelines and isolate.
Entry into the building is via the front door on Royal Parade and is only accessible using a staff/student card. Ilona is the only one who has access to the building and will let people in. If you are running late, call her when you arrive so that someone can come down and open the door for you.
We welcome new members to join our group. No previous experience required. Tuition is via hands on participation in weekly rehearsals.
People interested in joining can come along and sit in on several rehearsals prior to being accepted and committing to the group.
Rehearsals run every Monday 6:30pm to 8:30pm in the Heinze Room, 2nd Floor Melbourne Conservatorium (Melba Hall), Royal Parade, Parkville. From Flinders Street station, take tram 19 along Elizabeth St to Stop 11 on Royal Parade.
Please contact us first before attending, or if you have any questions.
The members of MCG come from diverse backgrounds but have been brought together by their love of gamelan. Several players have been studying and performing since 1990 formerly under the direction of Pak Poedijono.
Ilona Wright is MCG’s Musical Director and teacher. Ilona has studied gamelan as a music student at the University of Melbourne , joining MCG in the mid-1990s, and has been with the group continuously since then. Ilona is currently a lecturer and the director of student gamelan ensembles at the University of Melbourne. She also works as a piano teacher.