Follow the Bali Music
Showing off in other Countries
There are not many people in Bali can afford to go abroad since the trip expenses are high. But it cannot be denied that most people wish to get a chance and take a vacation abroad. Not only by the use of their own money, people can also get a trip abroad by joining arts and culture mission. Bali, as an island crammed with unique arts and ancient cultures has regularly sent the arts and cultures missions to introduce Bali to the world.
Recently, a group of Children Gong Kebyar in Banyuatis village showed their ability in playing Balinese musical instruments in front of hundreds of people at the Tropen Gallery in Amsterdam, Netherlands. It was their first performance in Amsterdam and the response of the audience toward the performance was great. Gong Kebyar Tri Bhuwana Giri had impressed the audience and the audience even asked them to play again and again.
One of the gong instructors is Komang Tritama or we can call him Mang Ama. He is a student in the second year of Senior High School and he lives in Munduk village. He’s been training the children gong kebyar group since he was in the third grade of junior high school. Performing in front of audiences in a foreign country was Mang Ama’s dream since he first learnt to play gong when he was in primary school. The growing of tourism in Munduk village had made his dream came true. Actually, their performance in Amsterdam was not his first experience to play gong overseas because the gong kebyar group in Munduk village had been performed in 2002 in France.
There was an embarrassing experience when he and the other players of Munduk Gong Kebyar stayed in a hotel in France.
They didn’t know that they mustn’t smoke in the room but they smoked at that time together in a room, made the room filled with smokes. Then the fire alarm rang and everybody got panic. Soon, it was known that the cause of the chaos was because of them. The head of the group then apologized to the hotel manager. There were also some of the members of the group who wanted to take a walk outside their room. Unfortunately, they didn’t know how to get back to their room because all of the rooms in the hotel were similar one another. They got lost and they couldn’t ask for direction since they didn’t speak French. Luckily, they met the coordinator of the group who then carried them back to their room.
Mang Ama continued to tell his experience when he and the Banyuatis Children Gong Kebyar Group went to Amsterdam. He said that when they arrived at the hotel, the first thing they did was unpacked. There were many musical instruments and luggage that need to be unwrapped after a long trip from Bali. Luckily, they didn’t forget to bring all of the things that they need for the performance such as the musical instruments and the costumes. They also brought rice and some ready made Balinese food with them. ”We were going to be in Amsterdam for some days and we didn’t know how to find rice in Amsterdam and we also afraid that our stomach wouldn’t be adapted with the food in Amsterdam so we brought our food with us” he said.
The hotel allowed them to smoke in the room but the other instructors didn’t bring cigarettes due to the embarrassing experience that they had in France. “We couldn’t smoke at that time and to smoke was very expensive in Amsterdam because the price of the smoke was expensive” Mang Ama told me.
Mang Ama is maybe only one out of a thousand children who could go abroad by their ability and specific skills. To go overseas for Mang Ama by his own money is not possible because he is only the son of a farmer. He even could pay his school fee through training the children how to play gong. For this, he thanks the head of the Children gong Kebyar Group in Banyuatis village for giving him a chance to train and also giving him some money to pay the school fee that he knows his parents couldn’t afford to give him.