Javanese gamelan notation/titilaras gendhing

Two MS-Word files. The first file has mainly Solonese gamelan notations. The file begins with Sampak-Srepeg and Ayak-Ayakan in different pathet. After that, gendhing will be found in alphabetical order. Several dances are given as well.
Last update: 5 April 2014

This latest version includes references to commercial cassettes (Lokananta, Kusuma etc.).
During my last stay in Kartasura (14 February to 9 May 2004) I gave a copy of my notations to Pak Lumbini who is a graduate of STSI and a son of one of its founders. He corrected errors in the notations and added dots to indicate high or low octaves. Sometimes he added alternative balungan, when several versions of the same piece are frequently used. Athough some ambiguities and some errors still remain, this is a much better version than the last one. I also added new pieces which I have played during my kendhang lessons. These pieces were given to me by my kendhang teacher, Pak Muryono of Ngawonggo.  Since aroud 2010 several pieces from the Mangkunegaran repertoire have been added, mailnly gendhing bonang Pťlog and dances. A larger font is being used to improve readability.
The second file contains pieces from Batu, some East Javanese, some central Javanese, which I played with the group of dr. Djoko, a family doctor and dhalang who has his own gamelan group.

You will need the KepatihanPro font to see everything properly. You may download the font from the American Gamelan Institute's site.

In all files referenced below sometimes the KepatihanPro font is used. All notations using the older Kepatihan font have now been replaced by KepatihanPro.
Unfortunately, the KepatihanPro font is a bit thin, Courier New Bold is better readable (for me at least).

Dr. Djoko uses a mix of East Javanese and Central Javanese gÍndhing. The pieces from Central Java (Solonese) often differed in details from the versions which I knew.

The file vormen.doc (Dutch) contains an explanation of structures in gamelan music and a word list. Last update : 6 Aug. 2004. <

Security: Avast! Antivirus checks all my hard disks every day. You can prevent MS-Word from executing unwanted macros through the Extra-Macro menu. You may even choose to look at the file through WordPad but WordPad may not show the whole file correctly. It cannot execute macro's, though.
The HTML version has been deleted and will not be updated as it takes far too much space (aroud 2 1/2 MB). If one is careful, on can easily avoid macro viruses. If one is computer literate it is completely safe to download a Word file.

Please let me know if you find any errors.

Notations last updated: 5 April 2014


-Solonese notations in MS-Word 2007 format. 420  kB
-Notations from Batu (Ki dr. Djoko) in MS-Word 6 format 50.5 kB

-Elementary explanations about gamelan structures (in Dutch, MS-Word 6 format) 100 kB

A very useful American web site is Barry Drummond's page at The California Institute of the Arts (CalArts or the Donald Duck University because they are sponsored by Walt Disney.) This site also features a word list.

Sound examples:

-GamÍlan of the Wayang Orang Bharata dance theatre in Jakarta. A short well-known piece: Ricik-Ricik Pl. 7.
The lakon (story) was "Bagong dadi SÍmbadra". KÍndhang: Pak Wiyono.
Recorded December 1980 by Rob van Albada.

-GamÍlan Bharata play the very popular gÍndhing Disko. The demon Buta Cakil dances Disco with the Panakawan (clown-servants).
KÍndhang: Wiyono.
Recorded Dec. 1980 by Rob van Albada.

-A female singer (pÍsindhen) takes singing lessons. The teacher plays the gÍnder. Batu (home of Dr. Djoko Santoso) 2000.
Recording by Rob van Albada

-Tayuban in Jarak.
Jarak is a red-light district in Surabaya. The guests of a bar sometimes invite a gamÍlan to perform a tayuban, in which they are allowed to dance with the (female) singer. Here, a group of four men drinking beer in one of the bars sent an invitation to the gamelan group. The instruments were loaded on a wooden cart, secured with rope, and brought to the site: the alley (gang) in front of the bar. The bar was a smallish room were four men were sitting with one local girl.
In this fragment the singer is still dressing and her part is sung by one of the gamÍlan players (a man).
2001: Unfortunately, this gamelan now has been sold to someone outside the area. Recorded July 10th, 2000 by Rob van Albada.

-Longer fragment of the above in MP3 format.

-Tayuban in KaliangÍt: During a wedding ceremony, a female singer dances and sings with (male) members of the public. Here one of the guests is singing. There is only one mike, which changes hands from man to woman and vice-versa.KaliangÍt is a village near Sumenep, in East Madura. It is well-known for its salt industry.
Recorded in 1991 by Rob van Albada.

-Tembang macapat in Kalianget: The reading of TÍmbang macapat is still popular in Madura. Curiously, not Madurese, but Javanese texts are being read. TÍmbang macapat is traditional verse. The most popular text is the SÍrat Yusup, the story of Joseph, which is being read here at the home of Kyai Hamze.
Recorded 7 September 1989 by Rob van Albada.

More sound examples forthcoming soon.


-American Gamelan Institute
-Dutch gamelan info&links
-KepatihanPro font
-Het Gamelanhuis in Amsterdam was vroeger de zolder van Radio Bangsa Jawa ing Suriname, die de Naga gastvrij onderdak verleende. Nu staan er maar liefst zeven gamelans, van verschillende groepen. / The Gamelan House today houses not less than seven gamelans, owned by several groups.


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