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Gamelan - Standard - Small 7 key


These Standard 7 key Gamelan are the core of our group and class Gamelan packs. They are all made in Bali and are the same as those used every day by Balinese villagers. The Standard range instruments have keys made from quality steel, and jackfruit hardwood cases. The sound quality is excellent and these are a very good substitute for the bronze-keyed Gamelan which easily cost at least five times as much. The case design is sturdy, but more minimal and sleek when compared to the Premium range, meaning that the Standard range is the way to go if storage space is a factor.


The ‘Gamelan (Peking) - Standard - Small 7 key’ is the smallest and highest of the three Standard 7 key instruments that we sell and is pitched one octave above the ‘Gamelan (Saron) - Standard - Medium 7 key’ and two octaves above the ‘Gamelan (Demung) - Standard - Large 7 key’.


This product can also be found in the ‘Gamelan - Standard - 7 key - 3 pack’ collection, as well as the larger Standard whole class packs.


How it's Played

To play the instruments, take the dedicated hammer-style beater (gamel) and firmly strike the key, letting the mallet bounce off swiftly. When you play a different note you should mute the previous one with your other hand so as to create a constant legato throughout the performance.

What it Goes Well With

Given that all of our Gamelan instruments are tuned to the same master set, it is safe to say that the entire range can be treated in a modular fashion, so you can pick and choose what aspects you add at a later date. You could decide to add more Standard 7 key instruments to your collection, or move to the Standard 10 key range.


Gongs are another traditional element that you may wish to consider adding for a truly authentic sound. You may also consider further dedicated percussion and add some Balinese Drums (Kendhang) or cymbals (Ceng Ceng).

How it's Made

The Standard Gamelan range is brilliant value and perfect for KS2/KS3 as well as other groups or projects. It makes for a visually pleasing ensemble when a whole set of Standard instruments is presented to an audience.


The instruments are all made in Bali and have excellent sound quality. The Standard range has all seven keys suspended by wire and held aloft by metal V holders to maintain a consistent height across the board, allowing them to evenly interact with the bamboo resonator tubes which are found under each key. The instruments are tuned to a traditional Balinese scale of the modern Gamelan Gong Kebyar, which is a modern style that translates as ‘the process of flowering’. It refers to the explosive changes in tempo and dynamic which have become characteristic of this particular style. It is the most popular form of Gamelan in Bali and is its most identifiable musical export.


There are 7 notes to each instrument and the ‘Slendro’ tuning is consistent with our 7 note Premium metallophones, making them interchangeable. Gong Kebyar music is based on a five-tone scale called ‘Pelog Selisir’ (tones 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6 of the 7-tone Pelog scale), and is characterised by brilliant sounds, syncopations, sudden and gradual changes in sound colour, dynamics, tempo and articulation, and most crucially complex, complementary interlocking melodic and rhythmic patterns called Kotekan.


Almost every instrument in a Gong Kebyar ensemble is paired, with a male and female counterpart in each grouping. Each instrument in a pair is tuned differently from its counterpart, one higher and one lower. Played at the same time, the higher instrument (known as the ‘Pengisep’ or "Inhaler") and the lower instrument (known as the ‘Pengumbang’ or ‘Exhaler’) produce a beating effect (‘Ombak’), creating an overall shimmering, pulsating quality.


The female instrument is tuned lower, while the male instrument is tuned higher. For example, one note on a female Gangsa Pemadé might be tuned to 220 Hz, while the male Gangsa Pemadé might be tuned slightly higher to 228 Hz. A Gong Kebyar ensemble is usually tuned so that the number of beats per second stays consistent throughout the range of the ensemble, although sometimes an ensemble is tuned so that the beats are slightly faster for higher frequencies.


How to Look After It

Keep all Gamelan instruments dry and away from extremes of temperature and they should last well.

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