Sadra, I Wayan

views updated

Sadra, I Wayan

Sadra, I Wayan , significant Indonesian composer, performer, and writer on music; b. Denpasar, Bali, Aug. 1, 1953. He attended the local high school cons., Konservatori Karawitan (KOKAR; graduated, 1972), where he specialized in traditional Balinese music, particularly gender wayang (music for the Balinese shadow play). In 1973–74 he worked with the well-known experimental Indonesian choreographer Sardono W. Kusumo; after touring with his group in Europe and the Middle East, Sadra settled in Jakarta, where he studied painting and taught Balinese gamelan at Institut Kesenian Jakarta (IKJ, Jakarta Fine Arts Inst.; 1975–78); also taught Balinese music at the Indonesian Univ. (1978–80), and experimental composition, Balinese gamelan, and music criticism at Sekolah Tinggi Seni Indonesia Surakarta (STSI, National Coll. of the Arts; from 1983), where he earned a degree in composition (1988); concurrently wrote new-music criticism for various Indonesian newspapers, including Suara Karya and Bali Post. He appeared widely as a performer with traditional Indonesian ensembles; performed throughout Indonesia and Europe, and in Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, and Seoul. In 1988 he was keynote speaker at the national Pekan Komponis (Composers’ Festival) in Jakarta; in 1989, appeared in Calif, at the Pacific Rim Festival; in 1990, was a featured participant at Composer-to-Composer in Telluride, Colo. Concurrent with the development of Indonesia’s national identity has come an increase of national new-music festivals, increased interaction among artists from different regions, and the greater degree of individual freedom to create autonomous music; all have contributed to the emergence of a distinct Indonesian aesthetic and a contemporary art music. Sadra is one of the outstanding young composers to emerge from this period, and his works have contributed much to the development of “musik kontemporer,” “komposisi,” and “kreasi baru” (“new creations”). He is also concerned with the social context of performance, considering audience development as important as the development of new works. His compositions are often scored for unusual combinations of instruments. In an experimental piece performed at the Telluride hist., raw eggs were thrown at a heated black panel; as the eggs cooked and sizzled, they provided both a visual and sonic element for the closing of the piece. He also proposed to the mayor of Solo, Central Java, a new work entitled Sebuah Kota Yang Bermain Musik (A City That Plays Music), wherein the entire population of the city would make sounds together for a specified 5 minutes; the proposal was not accepted, but Sadra hopes for its realization in the future.


Nadir for Gong Kebyar (1977); Lanyad for Gong Kebyar (1978); Lad-Lud-an for Knobbed Gongs from Reong and Terompong, 4 Kempul, Gong, 8 Kendang, 2 Suling, Gentorak, Ceng-Ceng, and Rebab (1981); Gender for Javanese Gender, 2 Balinese Gender, and Visual Elements, including Shadow Puppets (1982); Sekitar 22–14 Menit for Javanese Gamelan (1987); Karya spontan (Spontaneous Creation), accompaniment for Theater Perampok, for Saluang (Sumatran end-blown flute), Gender, Bumbung, and Kenong (1988); Stay a Maverick for Javanese Gamelan, Balinese Suling, and Sunda nese Kecapi (1989); Terus dan Terus (On and On) for Balinese Drum, Javanese Drum, and Drone Instruments (1989). dance accompaniment : Kicaka for Gender Wayang, Suling Gambuh, Reong, Terompong, and Kendang (1976); Gatotkaca-Sraya for Gong Kebyar (1980); Mecanda (for children’s improvised dance) for Geng-gong, Ceng-Ceng Kopyak, Tambur, and Gong Kebyar (1981); Kusalawa (1984); Drebah (1987); Buhin, collaborative improvisation for Triplex (Masonite board), Milk Cans Suling Gambuh, Balinese Drums, Gentorak, Knobbed Gongs, Rebab, and Slentem (1983); O-A-E-O for Voices, Flexotone, Kemanak, Suling, Rebab, Kendang, and Javanese Gamelan (1988); Aku for Street Musicians, Suling, Singers, and Drums (1990).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire