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date: 14 November 2019

Waning [laba wai, wani, laba]locked

  • Andrew C. McGraw

Extract

[laba wai, wani, laba]

Drum of Flores, Indonesia. It has a cylindrical wooden body, often closed at the bottom, and one goatskin head affixed by leather straps attached to a counterhoop. The head is tuned by moving wooden pegs placed between the straps and the body of the drum. Two are used in the gong waning ensemble in the central Sikka region: the larger waning inan, about 35 cm in diameter and 60 cm long, played with a bare hand and a stick in the other hand, and the smaller waning anak, about 25 cm in diameter, played with two sticks. The drums lie on the ground, the musicians sitting upon them. The ensemble includes up to five medium-sized, shallow bossed gongs (gong or go) ranging from 35 to 20 cm in diameter and named, from low to high pitch: inan, depun, beit, udon, and anak. Single gongs are held in the left hand and struck with a rubber-padded mallet held in the right, performing rapid interlocking patterns; the gong is dampened against the chest. These patterns are semi-improvised, the higher gongs being allowed more freedom. One or two larger suspended gongs may be added to play slower ostinatos. A bamboo time keeper (...

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