Siswå Sukrå is a community gamelan group of fifteen or more players, based at the Royal Festival Hall in London. The group has grown out of the Southbank Centre’s resident gamelan programme, which began in 1988. It is tutored by Pete Smith, one of the UK’s leading gamelan musicians and teachers.
Siswå Sukrå plays pieces from the central Javanese gamelan repertoire, both classical and modern, in moods ranging from solemn court ritual to exuberant village celebration. Its programmes are designed to introduce new audiences to a great musical culture that has fascinated composers and listeners for centuries.
In Java itself, the gamelan is most often found accompanying dance and drama performances. Besides performing pieces in concert style, Siswå Sukrå regularly accompanies Javanese dance in classical and more popular styles, and has played for wayang kulit (shadow-puppet) plays.
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