Beautiful Balinese Percussion at Fat Cat

When I think of Fat Cat, I think of swinging jazz bands. Tonight I happened to be in the city and when I decided to drop by Fat Cat, I had no idea who was going to play.

Boy, was I surprised when I found out.

The Dharma Swara Balinese Ensemble playing at Fat Cat

The Dharma Swara Balinese Ensemble playing at Fat Cat

That’s something that happens in New York City, sometimes you wander into an unexpected event. Then you realize you are having “an experience.”

So it was tonight.

The Dharma Swara organization hosts a “Summer Institute in Balinese Performance” (held in Worcester, MA) and they wanted to come to New York City and play for a crowd hoping folks might be interested to sign up for Bali percussion camp.  http://www.dharmaswarma.org/summerinstitute

Bang a gong, and a drum, and a...

Bang a gong, and a drum, and a…

It’s hard to describe the wonderful music these percussion instruments make in combination, but think xylophones, drums, gongs and flutes all going crazy in barely choreographed chaos.

Then the group took a break and when they came back, they introduced a Bali dancing segment with three lovely ladies in traditional dress holding bowls of rose petals in one hand doing perfectly timed head, hand and body movements to the accompanyment.

Bali dancer with rose petals

Bali dancer with rose petals

.

I was so enthralled with the performance I stayed about two hours watching these folks play.

One of my favorite pieces was played by two women who came out with their own mini-xylophones, and they played something called The Drunken Bird (I think?) that is supposed to be traditional.

Drunken Bird Bali percussion

Drunken Bird Bali percussion

.

Drumming at Bali percussion

Drumming at Bali percussion

Of coure, I HAVE to mention the wonderful drummers they had throughout the evening. The drumming was always in the front of the ensemble, and leading the entire group through their paces.

Tonight’s Balinese music performance was a stand out for me, and I’ve been to Fat Cat many times.

New York City… you gotta love it.

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2 Responses

  1. Amazing what you can come upon in this town.

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