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Jakarta Post

Pianist Wilson Chu puts a Western spin on ‘gamelan’

  • Bagus BT. Saragih

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, November 9 2017   /  01:25 am

Wilson Chu (Photo by Jason Leonardi)Music enthusiasts crowding the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS) in Glasgow, the United Kingdom, were recently confronted with a rare yet intriguing piano composition.Wilson Chudiharja, a 23-year-old Indonesian pianist, was on the stage presenting his six-minute creation, “Paraphrase on a Javanese Theme.”

The song exudes a distinct Javanese quality from start to end. In fact, the melodically rich repertoire is wholly rooted in gamelan (traditional orchestra) scales, enchanting the international audience with a unique musical experience.

“Gamelan music normally consists of several instruments, played by several people. I played a gamelan arrangement with one instrument — by one player,” Wilson told The Jakarta Post.

The pianist was awarded a slot in the Mondays at One: Keyboard concert on Oct. 9 after winning a student...