Mekar Bhuana Gamelan Music and Dance

Mekar Bhuana Gamelan Music and Dance

Mekar Bhuana Gamelan Music and Dance
5
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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About
A family founded centre, Mekar Bhuana's vision is to support traditional Balinese gamelan music and dance that is rarely seen or heard. They work with the community, researching, studying, documenting and reconstructing and then educate people, particularly the younger generation, to encourage awareness about the beauty of these endangered art-forms. To the public, the centre offers traditional Balinese gamelan music and dance classes and workshops are for those people who are seriously interested in learning about the beauty and history of these unique traditional art-forms. You can book to to take lessons, workshops, cultural immersion programs, or see rehearsals of rare performing art-forms at this incredible living museum of antique instruments, lovingly reconstructed and restored by Mekar Bhuana's founders. Mekar Bhuana also has an online store mekarbhuana.com that supports Balinese village artisans with the proceeds going to their gamelan and dance projects and activities.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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5.0
94 reviews
Excellent
91
Very good
3
Average
0
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0
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Cynthia I
6 contributions
Jul 2022 • Solo
I'm a dancer...a world dance professor. I normally like to spend my summers learning a new cultural dance form. I found Mekar Bhuana Balinese Cultural Center on the net via YouTube and the great reviews of the experiences of others. So I decided to study there (before pandemic)...and it was the most wonderful and fun experience I will never forget. I didn't just learn dance, I experienced the real culture of Bail. I highly recommend Mekar Bhuana Center. Fun for solo travelers and families! Kids too! Thank you so much for the fabulous experience!
Written 1 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Wala T
3 contributions
Dec 2022
I went to Bali wanting to know a little more about its unique music and found this place through an online search. They are situated not far from Kuta and offer courses in Gamelan music and dance. I had a 2 hour introduction on one specific instrument (I bought the practice version of it to take home with me) by a very talented balinese musician. Vaughan and his wife (the owners) were lovely hosts. They are really putting a lot of effort into preserving Gamelan and making it accessible to people throughout the world. The visit was certainly on of the highlights of my trip.
Written 27 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Matthew
5 contributions
Sep 2022 • Business
What a wonderful experience for both amateurs and experienced professionals. The staff here were amazing!!!!! Vaughan is knowledgeable helpful and caring and Mas Pur was an amazing teacher!!!!! If you want to learn to play Gamelan, this is the place to go.
Written 1 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for taking a private full-day gamelan workshop and 9-hour package of private lessons with us! We enjoyed sharing our knowledge with you and look forward to welcoming you back to Bali one day soon for more gamelan tuition. Vaughan Hatch, Founder - Gamelan Division
Written 9 October 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jeremy L
4 contributions
Jun 2022 • Couples
I’m a musician who took a really lovely gamelan lesson here during my stay in Bali. It was a great experience! Would love to have had more time for more lessons. Will come back again next time I visit.
Written 26 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We are glad you enjoyed your gamelan lesson learning gangsa from our antique Semara Patangian orchestra. With a music background like yours, as well as further lessons on this instrument, private workshop would be something to consider for your next experience studying at our centre - then you could learn about the history of Balinese gamelan, see many instruments demonstrated and also try a selection of instruments from different ensembles that are made from various materials and have different tunings and tuning systems. Regards Vaughan
Written 13 July 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

LD
2 contributions
May 2022
Truly a treat to have the opportunity to learn about Balinese Gamelan music and instruments from such talented musicians (and to support a great organization in the process!). I took a rindik lesson at Mekar Bhuana and it was by far the highlight of my visit to Bali. My instructor, Pur, was super knowledgable, patient and encouraging and just a ton of fun to work with. Will definitely sign up for a workshop series when I return. Thank you Pur and Mekar Bhuana!
Written 23 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We are really happy that you enjoyed studying Rindik at our centre. This bamboo-keyed instrument a super fun instrument and a great entry-point to Balinese music. Pur enjoyed introducing you to the basics. We look forward to you booking a private gamelan workshop with us - this will allow you to try many different instruments as well as understand the history and sociology of Balinese music all in one session. Thanks for choosing to study at Mekar Bhuana Centre!
Written 28 June 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Kalena G
2 contributions
May 2022
This experience was one of my favorites in Bali during my month long stay. The chance to sit with talented Balinesian musicians and learn gamelan was invaluable. My teacher, Putu, was patient and very clear and the owner, Vaughan, was delightful in setting everything up. We did a 2 hour session on their beautiful property and explored the very cool surrounding neighborhood after. I will definitely be retuning for a continued education. Please support this amazing school!
Written 3 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Putu said that it was a delight to teach you both and she was impressed how quickly you picked up Gender Wayang in just two hours! It is so refreshing to be able to hold in-person sessions due to the pandemic (we see your review as an important step forward after a challenging hiatus of more than two years!). We look forward to teaching you again some day in the future at our family based centre. Thanks for choosing to learn with us!
Written 28 June 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jessk
Sydney, Australia5 contributions
Jan 2020
As a Music Teacher I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at Mekar Bhuana.
I did a private full day workshop which was informative and practical. The workshops also come with a copy of the study material.
Vaughn was knowledgeable and very supportive. The workshop gave me the opportunity to try a range of instruments. I would recommend the workshops or lessons at Mekar Bhuana for Music teachers, students and anyone who wants to learn about Balinese music and culture.
Written 20 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thanks for choosing to learn at Mekar Bhuana Centre - we really appreciate you as an educator recommending our gamelan workshop program as well as our practical lessons. Looking forward to welcoming you back one day!
Written 28 June 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Richard P
Hong Kong, China1 contribution
Dec 2019 • Couples
This was a very special opportunity. We very strongly recommend the experience of learning about this rich art form in the company of such dedicated and welcoming people. Over the course of two weeks in Balu, this was unquestionably the highlight and it opened up our understanding of the culture in ways that enhanced the rest of our stay. Lovely people who welcome you into their own home to share their deep love for one of the world's most truly wonderful cultural traditions.
Written 17 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We were more than happy to be part of this special opportunity and we feel honored to be your trip's highlight! Thank you for choosing to learn at our family based centre and we hope to welcome you back and teach you again in the future.
Written 28 June 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Gabriel R
1 contribution
Oct 2019 • Solo
Mekar Bhuana is great. I took four of the four-hour music workshops over a two-week period and learned a lot about Gamelan.

Vaughn, who taught the historical portion of the workshop, is very knowledgable about the history of music in Bali and passionate about sharing it. Pur, who taught the practical portion, is a forward-thinking composer of Gamelan with deep roots in tradition, and a fantastic teacher. They are both are skilled on a wide variety of instruments, and they are both wonderful people with interesting musical minds.

Highly recommend taking classes here and supporting this place. Their mission to preserve disappearing forms of Gamelan is an important one.
Written 25 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
It was a pleasure to meet and teach you at our centre. Thanks for the supportive words of our mission. We look forward to welcoming you to Mekar Bhuana again soon! Vaughan, Co-founder
Written 10 November 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Paul Bennett
Philadelphia, PA4 contributions
Oct 2019
We did a four-hour gamelan and legong (dance) workshop at Mekar Bhuana, and it was hands-down the best thing we did in Bali—and we had a lot of fun here doing other stuff too, like surfing, visiting Ubud, etc. But, this was a deep learning experience that was also super fun and engaging. We laughed and learned in equal measure.

As other reviewers have noted, co-founders and husband-wife team Vaughn and Evie know their stuff. Vaughn is a New Zealander who has lived in Bali for 22 years and is an accomplished ethnomusicologist. He's followed in the wake of Colin McPhee (House in Bali) and recovered dozens of lost musical traditions and instruments, which he's been repatriating back into Balinese society. He leads the gamelan part of the program, along with Pur, a professional musician, which comprises a quick overview/lecture on the history of music in Bali, followed by lots of beguiling demonstration, and capped with some hands-on instruction. I did this with my kids, and we had a ton of fun. It sounded horrible, I'm sure. But, you learn a lot by coupling listening with doing.

Lunch was a traditional Indonesia meal with yummy tofu, tempeh, chicken, and rice, capped by fresh mangos from the tree in the garden.

In the afternoon, Evie took over. She is a professional dancer who's been at it since the age of four. She also gave a short presentation on the history of dance, an amazing demonstration, and a hands-on workshop. I was pretty proud of my legong talents; but my kids thought otherwise.

In the end, this was amazing. In an over-touristed place like Bali where so much of the local culture has been packaged for quick, easy consumption, this workshop was a great change of pace. It was deep, immersive, and engaging. We came away with a much better understanding of Balinese culture and history. Highly recommend.
Written 7 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for choosing to learn at our centre by taking a combination private family workshop with us. It was our pleasure to teach all of you. We are glad that you also enjoyed lunch and the general family, non-touristic atmosphere of our centre. We look forward to welcoming you back to Mekar Bhuana some day very soon! Vaughan, Co-founder
Written 10 November 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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MEKAR BHUANA GAMELAN MUSIC AND DANCE (Denpasar) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Mekar Bhuana Gamelan Music and Dance

Mekar Bhuana Gamelan Music and Dance is open:
  • Mon - Fri 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM


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