It was against the rules to photograph or record the gamelan music last night, so I don’t have a photo of gamelan or the dancers, but here’s my best description.
Gamelan played the haunting sounds for two numbers, and on the third, the Gambyong Paranom piece, four dancers smoothed onto the stage in small steps, They wore brown/gold sarongs with a swag of red material across the waist and hips. They were adorned with gold necklaces and head pieces of gold over their hair pulled back into a bun. The dancers performed a traditional dance from Java, with fluidity, following the rhythms of the music. With hand and foot gestures they manipulated the long yellow scarf they all wore around their necks.
My daughter-in-law, Aleida was one of the dancers. She looked gorgeous.
Gamelan is the name that covers around 20 – 25 musical instruments, with gongs, a stringed instrument, a flute, and drums. It is music, long pieces, that put you in a mountainside, near a jungle, mesmerizing you into a dreamy, quiet place in your mind.
The UC Berkeley Gamelan Class, and the Lestari Indonesia Dance Company performed.