Mining the world's musical riches - Tourism Indonesia


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mining the world's musical riches

In a world stuck in a musical rut, the rich traditions of Asia - especially Indonesia - could provide fresh ideas, with one group of musical experts setting out to make that happen.

Ethnomusicologist Franki Raden, who has spent more than 16 years studying and teaching world music both in Indonesia and abroad, says the world is waiting for a feed from Asia, especially from Indonesia, as artists in North America and Europe stagnate, regurgitating similar ideas in their work.

"Indonesia should make a larger contribution to world art and cultural heritage," Franki said.

He points out that Indonesian artists and musicians rarely come up with new work based on the country's tradition heritage, and that any such work rarely attracts international attention.

The Sacred Bridge Foundation, which Franki established in 1998, is setting out to address the issue by holding a workshop and musical clinic with the aim of providing directives for musicians of the 21st century.

'Gaung: 21st Century Global Music Education', to be held at the Bali Classic Center in Ubud from April 23 to May 2, will bring together internationally renowned experts in music and music-related sciences and technologies.

During the 10-day programme, the experts will share and discuss their work, visions and experiences, ranging across topics such as musical and spiritual practice, acoustic science and technology, and creative musical thinking.

Among the facilitators and gurus involved in the workshop are percussionist/composer Stomu Yamash'ta, French composer Jean Claude Eloy, acoustician and scientist Yoshio Yamasaki, jazz-rock pioneer Larry Coryell, Zen Buddhist monk Yamada Sosho, Sufi maestro Marzuki Hasan and Kejawen spiritual guru Sumarah.

Franki Raden said the workshop and the clinic would focus on music, but approach it from the perspective of multiple disciplines, such as "the science of music, performance of music, the business side or cultural economics of music and even the ritualistic side of music."

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