Small Explosions - A Spring Gamelan Concert

May 01, 2022 | 03:00 pm

May 01, 2022 | 03:00 pm

An afteroon of music and dance from Bali, featuring Gamelan Galak Tika and students (from MIT and Harvard) in MIT’s gamelan class, both under the direction of Gusti Komin. This program will feature gamelan music and dance from the explosive to the serene, as well as two original compositions by Gusti Komin, one especially for spring. Please join us as we celebrate the end of our 29th season and first year back on the stage!


Gusti Komin, Artistic Director

Originally from the village of Pengosekan, Bali, Gusti Komin Darta has been hailed as a leading composer, performer, and teacher of Balinese music of his generation. Born in 1978, he first studied music with his father, renowned musician Gusti Ketut Kerta, and began performing professionally for shadow puppet plays (wayang) at the age of 9. As a teenager, he enrolled at the prestigious national arts conservatory, now known as the Indonesian Institute for the Arts. Gusti Komin is a founding member of the virtuosic Balinese gamelan Çudamani and has toured extensively throughout Europe, Japan, and the United States. For 25 years he taught gendér wayang, reyong, and kendang instruments to local and foreign students out of his family home in Pengosekan, Bali as well as teaching overseas.


Gusti Komin currently performs and teaches widely along the U.S. east coast and is sought after as a composer, performer, and educator. He is Founding Director of the innovative chamber gamelan Saiban, and teaches at various American universities including MIT, as well as community-based groups such as Gamelan Galak Tika in Boston and Gamelan Dharma Swara in NYC.


Widely acknowledged as Master of gendér wayang, one of its foremost contemporary composers blending traditional and modern gamelan music in imaginative ways, exacting teacher and rebellious spirit, Komin writes music that explodes conventions and pushes limitations of even the strongest performers.


GAMELAN GALAK TIKA has been at the forefront of innovative, cross- cultural music for Balinese gamelan since 1993. Founded at MIT by Evan Ziporyn, Desak Madé Suarti Laksmi, and I Nyoman Catra, Galak Tika is currently directed by Gusti Komin, drawing its membership from across the Boston community as well as MIT students and staff. The name “Galak Tika” is Bahasa Kawi (classical Javanese, a dialect of Sanskrit) for “intense togetherness.”


Galak Tika has performed at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, BAM, Boston Symphony Hall, Jordan Hall, several Bang on a Can Marathons, Southern Exposure, the Cleveland Museum of Art, Zankel Hall, the Boston Museum of Science, and the Kripalu Yoga Institute, along with many east coast universities. In 2005, the group performed at the Bali International Arts Festival and in numerous villages around the island. In addition to its dedication to the traditional music and dance of Bali, Galak Tika regularly commissions and performs new works by Balinese and American composers for gamelan in combination with western, non-western and electronic instruments. Gamelan Galak Tika’s outreach includes a youth gamelan, dance classes, and school workshops. It also created the first-ever “kecak-along,” a participatory performance in which 1,000 people were taught to shout the interlocking rhythms of the famous Balinese monkey chant. In 2016, Galak Tika members Mark Stewart and Emeric Viani founded Anak Tika, a youth gamelan program, bringing gamelan into the lives of dozens of Boston & Cambridge area students. Anak Tika provides year-round classes and workshops, collaborating frequently with Galak Tika, creating a collaborative learning and performance environment for members of both ensembles. For more information on this program, please visit


Galak Tika has commissioned and premiered works by Terry Riley, Glenn Kotche, Evan Ziporyn, Christine Southworth, Dewa Ketut Alit, Desak Made Suarti Laksmi, Robin Buyer, Ramon Castillo, Midori Matsuo, Joshua Penman, Sam Schmetterer, Dan Schmidt, and PoChun Wang, among others. Notable projects have included Riley’s “White Space Conflict,” Southworth’s “SuperCollider” for electronic gamelan and Kronos Quartet, and Ziporyn’s “Bayu Sabda Idep” for gamelan and strings. It has released several recordings of new and classical repertoire, including most recently Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Piano with Javanese Gamelan with Sarah Cahill as soloist.


​For more information, please visit



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