In 1987, Gamelan Pacifica director, Jarrad Powell, commissioned the building of a new gamelan in Java to expand the instrumentation of their ensemble. The new gamelan was a full slendro/pelog set with some instruments built of iron and some of bronze. Suhirdjan built the iron instruments in Yogyakarta, while Tentrem built the bronze instruments in Surakarta. Subsequently, a gamelan in the Cirebon style was purchased from Endo Suanda, one of Cirebon’s most noted topeng dancers and musicians. Gamelan Pacifica would like to thank all the instrument builders who have explored the possibilities of gamelan instruments throughout many centuries. Their combined perseverance, knowledge, and innovation have manifested a marvelous musical idiom of ancient depth and limit-less possibilities. We are especially grateful to Suhirdjan, whose commitment to gamelan building came at just the right time to benefit Gamelan Pacifica and music lovers in the Northwest.
Seattle, Washington, USA