Balinese Contemporary


Composer, Director of Gamelan Yuganada, Ethnomusicologist,

I Wayan Sudirana

Born in Ubud, Bali, Sudirana is one of Bali’s most well known composers, teaching and performing across Bali and internationally. He is also one of the most successful professors at the Indonesia Institute of the Arts in Denpasar. After graduating from the Indonesian Arts Institute, Denpasar, he studied at the University of British Columbia (UBC) where he received his MA and Ph.D in Ethnomusicology. He was commissioned by the Canadian government to compose a piece combining Balinese gamelan, Taiko Japan and Bagpipes to be performed at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada. He has collaborated with worldwide companies, such as Jack Morton Production New York for the Hundred Percent Club (HPC) of IBM in May 2017 and May 2018, Five Current Company for the opening ceremony of the Asian Games held in Jakarta, August 2018. He has also collaborated with many famous composers over the years including Michael Tenzer (2003 - 2013), Andrew Clay McGraw (2006 - 2010), Peter Michael Steele and Joshep Sandino (2007), Gamelan X, and performed at ​ Carnegie Hall, New York. He has just published a book about the future of Balinese sacred ensemble (2019), and also produced two CDs of his very won new works for Gamelan with Gamelan Yuganada (2019).
    -Ph.D in Ethnomusicology, School of Music, University of British Columbia 2013. Thesis:
    Gamelan Gong Luang: Ritual, Time, Place, Music, and Change in a Balinese Sacred Ensemble.
    Thesis Supervisor: Prof. Michael Tenzer
    - M.A. degree in Ethnomusicology, School of Music, University of British Columbia 2009. Thesis:
    Kendang Tunggal: Balinese Solo Drumming Improvisation. Thesis Supervisor: Prof. Michael
    - Sarjana Seni (S.Sn) with a Cum Laude citation from Indonesian Arts Institute (ISI Denpasar),
    Bali (2002).
  • -Associate Professor, Music Department, ISI Denpasar, 2015 to Present
  • - Associate Professor, Graduate Studies Program, ISI Denpasar, 2013 to Present
  • - Sessional Lecturer, MUSC 165B Balinese Music, UBC School of Music, 2007 – 2013
  • - Sessional Lecturer, MUSC 565B Balinese Music, UBC School of Music, 2007 – 2013
  • - Visiting Lecturer at Quest University, Squamish, BC, Canada, 2009 - 2012
  • - Visiting Lecturer at University Children Development School, Seattle, Washington, USA, October 2011.
  • - Artist in Resident Gamelan Gita Asmara, Canada, 2004-2013.
  • - Music Director for UBC’s Student Gamelan 2007-2013.
  • -Indonesian Asian Games Organizing Committee, Property Designer, Opening Ceremony 2018
  • - Jack Morton Production, Creative Director Bali, 2017 – 2018
  • - Visiting Artist at Hands Percussion Company, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 2017
  • - Visiting Artist at Gamelan Singamurti, Singapore 2016
  • - Founder and Director of Gamelan Yuganada 2015 - Present
  • - Curator of “Komponis Kini” New Music for Gamelan at Bentara Budaya Bali, Kompas Group, 2014 – Present
  • - Founder and Director of Gamelan JingGong, Bali 2014 - Present
  • - President of Lembaga Kesenian (Art Department), LPM Ubud since 2013 to present.
  • - Gamelan Gita Asmara, Vancouver Canada 2004 -2013.
  • - Gamelan Kayonan, Toronto, Canada, 2011
  • - Young Artist Experience 2008-09, Vancouver Canada.
  • - Teaching several workshops around British Columbia area 2004 – 2012.
  • - Vice-President of “I-Think,” Intellectual Thinker, an Indonesian Ph.D. Student Organization under the umbrella of Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia, Vancouver, Canada, 2010 to present
  • - Arts and Documentation committee at the Grand Ceremony Padang Tegal Ubud 2010
  • - Organizing Director, the Ubud Festival of the Arts, July-August 2006
  • - Organizing Director, the Drumming Competitions of Ubud Festival, july-August 2005
  • - Instructor for Gong Kebyar Festival in Karangasem 2003, Gianyar 2000 and 2004, Klungkung 2000.
  • - Instructor for Gamelan Ensemble “Chandra Wirabhuana”, Ubud (1999-2003).
  • - Instructor for Gamelan Ensemble “ Cenik Wayah”, Ubud (1999-2003).
  • - Instructor for Gamelan Ensemble “ Cudamani”, Ubud (1999-2003).
  • - Instructor for Gamelan Ensemble “Tedung Agung”, Ubud (1998-2000).
  • - Private Instructor for gamelan, all levels.
  • - Balinese (fluent)
  • - Indonesian (fluent)
  • - English (fluent)
  • - The Minister of Higher Education Research Awards (DIPA) ISI Denpasar 2018
  • - Bangli Regency Arts Award, 2018
  • - Composition Award from Bentara Budaya Bali, Kompas Group 2016
  • - The South Korean Minister of Culture Award 2015
  • - Special Arts Award from The Department of Higher Education of Indonesia, July 2014
  • - Faculty of Arts Graduate Award, UBC, 2011-2012
  • - Research Assistantship Award, UBC, 2010-2011 The Cultural Olympiad: commissioned to write a piece--combining Baleganjur, Taiko, and Bagpipes--for the Winter Olympic Games 2010 Vancouver Canada
  • - The Four Year Fellowship (4YF) Award UBC 2009 - 2013: PhD Program in Ethnomusicology
  • - Ph.D Tuition Award, UBC, 2009 - 2013: Ph.D Program in Ethnomusicology
  • - The University of Graduate Fellowship (UGF) Award UBC 2007 - 2009: Master Program in Ethnomusicology
  • - Graduate Entrance Scholarship Award UBC 2007-2008
  • - International Partial Tuition Scholarship UBC 2007-2008
  • - The UBC Andrew Fellowship Award 2004-2005
  • - Cultural Service Award from the Mayor of Klungkung, Bali 2000
  • - Cultural Service Award from the Mayor of Gianyar, Bali, 2000, 2004.
  • -2018. “Answering Questions, Questioning Answers: Intellectuality in the Creative Process of Balinese Gamelan Composition.” 5th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Performing Arts of Southeast Asia (PASEA). National Museum of Sabah
  • - 2018. “Meguru Panggul and Meguru Kuping; The Method of Learning and Teaching Balinese Gamelan.” Lekesan: Interdeciplinary Journal of Asia Pacific Arts. Vol. 1, Issue 1, April 2018 (ISSN 2598-2192)
  • - 2018. “Improvisation in Balinese Music: An Analytical Study of Three Different Types of Drumming in the Balinese Gamelan Gong Kebyar.” Journal of Music Science, Technology, and Industry, Vol. 1. Issue 1, October 2018 (ISSN 2622-8211)
  • - 2017. “Tradisi Versus Modern: Diskursus Pemahaman Istilah Tradisi dan Modern di Indonesia,” Prosiding Seminar Nasional, Fakultas Seni Pertunjukan, ISI Denpasar, February 2017 (ISBN 978-602-73711-0-1)
  • - 2016. Seni Pertunjukan Berbasis Kearifal Lokal: “Bali Fusion Pop Musik,” Prosiding Seminar Nasional, Fakultas Seni Pertunjukan ISI Denpasar, Oktober 2016 (ISBN 978-602-73711-0-1
  • - 2016 “JingGong, Finding Identity in Composing New Music.” Drumming Nation Symposium, Kaleidoscope Drumming Festival, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2016
  • - 2015. “Understanding Tradition in Composing New Contemporary Works for Gamelan.” First International Bali Conference, Bali Spirit Festival, 2015
  • - 2014. Cultural Evolution in Gamelan Gong Kebyar. 100 year of Gamelan Gong Kebyar, Bentara Budaya Bali Kompas Group.
  • - 2013. Gamelan Gong Luang: Ritual, Time, Place, Music, and Change in a Balinese Sacred Ensemble. PhD Dissertation. UBC
  • - 2013. “Borrowing, Stealing, Transforming: Intercultural Influences in Balinese Neo-Traditional Composition” in Performing Arts in Postmodern Bali: Changing Interpretations, Founding Traditions, Kendra Stepputat, ed. Graz: Shaker Verlag, page 175 – 186.
  • - 2012. Creative Process in Composing Balinese Contemporary Works. Canadian New Music Network Conference, Woodward Hall, Simon Fraser University
  • - 2011. Intercultural Influences in Balinese Contemporary Composition. Society for Ethnomusicology conference, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 2011. Borrowing, Stealing, Transforming: Foreign Materials in Balinese Neo-Traditional Music and the Evolution of Local Concepts of the “Work.” Joint Conference of Asian Studies and Association of Asian Scholars in Hawaii,
  • - 2010. Gamelan Gong Luang; Religious, Socio-cultural, and Philosophical Context. Directed Study Paper as a preparation for Ph.D Dissertation. 2010
  • - 2009. Pengawak Kinada: Melody and Time in a Balinese Luang Composition, Journal Mudra Special Edition (the only Indonesian Arts Journal in English)
  • - 2009. Kendang Tunggal: Balinese Solo Drumming Improvisation. MA Thesis, University of British Columbia
  • - 2009. Old Javanese Ramayana: Its Connection to Bhattikavya and Predecessor of The Balinese Ramayana Kekawin. Graduate Seminar Paper presented at the Asian Studies Seminar, UBC. - 2008. Kebyar Style and Its Influence on Other Types of Gamelan. Graduate Ethnography and Representation Seminar, UBC
  • - 2008. Timbila, Wilah, and Bilah; The Study of The Xylophone of Chopi People and Its Relation To Indonesia, Graduate Seminar in African Studies, UBC.
  • - 2018. Linggar Petak, a nnew dance piece for ISI Denpasar
  • - 2018. Parianom Anyar, a new piece for gamelan gong kebyar at Bali Arts Festival, Bali
  • - 2018. Baleganjur Pitamaha, Baleganjur Competition at Gianyar Regency
  • - 2017 – 2018. Opera “Balinese Fable Story,” Jack Morton Production, New York
  • - 2017. Musical Drama “Oneness Project” on Korean Romeo Juliet – K Pop, Seoul Institute for the Arts, Seoul Korea.
  • - 2016. “Kilitan,” a new piece combining reong, trompong, and taiko drum for Kaleidoscope Drumming Festival, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
  • - 2016. “Nglegong,” a commissioned piece for the “Tribute to Lotring (Komponis Kini#1).” Bentara Budaya Bali. Kompas
  • - 2015. “JingGong,” a piece that combines South Korean and Balinese music and won the best prize from the South Korean Minister of Culture.
  • - 2015. “Ketug Bumi,” a piece for new ensemble Ketug Bumi presented by ISI Denpasar at the opening of Bali Arts Festival 2015
  • - 2014. “Kasus Tiga,” a new music for gamelan that combines musical elements of South Indian Tala Rhythm, African, and gamelan. It was commissioned for “a tribute to kebyar’ concert.
  • - 2013.“Kelangon,” a new music for gamelan that combines Violin, Zheng, and Gamelan Semarandana, UBC Canada
  • - 2012.“Tabuh Pisan Bhaskara,” a classical lelambatan piece for gamelan GIta Asmara Canada. - 2012.“Samasa,” a contemporary piece that combines West African drumming and gamelan ensemble, UBC Canada
  • - 2010, “Sembur Tangi,” a new bebarongan piece (an opening piece for the the long dance drama Calonarang) for gamelan Cenik Wayah. Ubud
  • - 2010, “Ruas,” a contemporary dance piece that was composed for gong competition between Cenik Wayah and Dharma Swara New York.
  • - 2010, “New Binari,” a new arrangement of Binari for Sekaa Jaya Jenggala Taman Ubud, 2010 2010, “Rerejangan Catur Sandi,” a new dance piece composed and choreograph for the Grand Temple Ceremony in Padang Tegal Village, Ubud.
  • - 2010, “Navadaza,” a new musical composition that combines elements of Western, African, and African music. Commissioned by Gita Asmara, Canada.
  • - 2008, “Abakor” a new musical composition for Korean instruments, UBC Samulnori Ensemble, Canada.
  • - 2007, “Binari 2” a new musical composition for UBC student gamelan, Canada.
  • - 2007, “Didedy” a new musical composition, co-composed by Andrew McGraw, Ida Bagus Made Widnyana, and I Wayan Sudirana, for gamelan Cudamani 2007.
  • - 2007, “Kreasi 4 5”, a new musical composition that are combining two different types of gamelan that has different scale (gamelan Angklung and gamelan Gong Kebyar). This piece was composed for the Bali Art Festival and played by “Gamelan Cenik Wayah” Ubud, Bali.
  • - 2007, “Gita Asmara” a new musical composition for Gamelan Gita Asmara Canada, 2007.
  • - 2006, “Arakok,” a new musical composition with combining western instrument and gamelan for Gamelan Gita Asmara Canada.
  • - 2005, “Binari,” a new musical composition of Semarandhana for UBC’s Student Gamelan, 2005.
  • -Michael Tenzer (Ethnomusicology/UBC):
  • - Andrew McGraw (Ethnomusicology/Richmond):
  • - Adheesh Sathaye (Asian Studies/UBC):
  • - Nathan Hesselink (Ethnomusicology/UBC):
  • - Michael Lipsey(Composition/Queens):
  • - John Roeder (Theory/UBC):
  • - Kofi Gbolonyo (Ethnomusicology/UBC):
  • - I Wayan Rai S (ISI Denpasar):