GENDING SORAN
Lokananta cassette ACD 010 was issued on the 6th of May,1972.
Keluaga Karawitan RRI Surakarta
Director: P. Atmosunarto

A “gending” is a piece of gamelan music. Soran is loud.  This is music for the loud instruments of the gamelan. These pieces are often played as an introduction to lagu klenengan. They are usually placed in the beginning because the pengrawit needs to change the gamelan, and to know the embat (character of the piece).

1. Kebogiro Glendeng.   Pelog Nem
Initially Kebogiro was a gending lancaran (gending in lancaran form)

This piece became the inspiration for Ki Nartosabdho to compose the Perahu Layar song. Kebogiro is also played in the Sekaten gamelan. The piece which is called Kebogiro in the Upacara Pengantin (Wedding Ceremony) is really Lancaran Gandes.

2. Tropongbang. Pelog Nem
This gending is in lancaran form.

Ki Nartosabdo used this gending for shadow puppet performances.

Example: this gending is used when the king summoned the chief minister to go into battle.   Nartosabdo only composed the lyric.  That’s why it is called Rinenggo Tropongbang.  It is usually played in lancar-tangguh-dados rhythm.

Lancaran is played as well for practicing the change of kendang.

Tropongbang is also used in the Ronggo Lawe dance.

3. Manyar Sewu. Pelog Barang
This gending is played like Tropongbang

Pelog barang is employed for the Jaranan Dance

Manyar is a type of small bird that eats rice, They always fly in groups.

Sewu means a thousand in Javanese. Thus Manyar Sewu means a thousand small birds.

For a puppet master, Manjar Sewu is often used to depict soldiers who always march as a group. Manyar Sewu is also used in gamelan practice for beginners who are members of the royal family.

4. Maesa Liwung, Ladrangan. SlendroSanga
Maesa = karibou, water buffalo

Liwung = hesistant, in doubt, confused

Maesa Liwung is a ceremony in the Surakarta Court/Kingdom

There is a village called Trendowahono, 7km north of Solo, which is famous for its ghosts.   In order for these ghosts not to disturb people, a Maesa Liwung ceremony is held.  People flock to this village, hoping for their safety. The ceremony is held once a year.

Dados is being used here because of its high musical sense/taste for dance accompaniment.

Although kendangan ciblon, which displays a cheerful character, is being used in this gending, there is still a tone of sadness and doubt, mixed together.  This is because Maesa Liwung means doubt or hesistation.

This gendhing is also used in the Wudotomo dance, bribil and wayang orang. In wayang orang it is being played to accompany for Rahwana, who is crabby, and Bima. They are both burly characters.  It is performed in the middle, in the form of lancaran.

5. Wrahatbala Slendro Manyura
This is a gendng lancaran which is used to welcome the guests at a wedding in the countryside.

In a Wayang Orang performance it is played to accompany the “evil” characters like Prabu Rahwanan, Kongsa, Surati Montra.

6. Udan Mas (Mtrm) Pelog Barang
Udan mas – golden rain

Yogya style is used in this gendhing.

Before 1970,  Solo and Yogya, each has its own style. This is may be because of the influence of their kings.  The king of Yogya was a military man, whereas the ruler of Solo was not.   Usually Udan Mas is played in villages at the time of closing a ceremony. The people believe that this melody will bring them fortune as well as bestow a blessing upon those who have held the ceremony.

7. Tropongan Pelog Nem
Tropongan means never to stop. All tones are being used in this gending. This is a device which is used for a variation. Note 7 is used in the beginning or in the middle.

The gending is often played in a colossal dance (soldiers dance).

In East Java, tropongan is played after the Ngrimo dance.

8.  Singa Nebah Ldr. Bima Kurda Pelog Barang
Singa Nebah (an angry lion) is an ancient lancaran.

This piece originated in the Kingdom of Pajang, during the reign of Sultan Hadi Wijoyo, whose mother was a relative of the Prince Purunan.

Prince Purunan was very skilled in composing gending, and if he felt unfairly treated, he protested by composing a new piece. One such gending is Singa Nebah, The piece indicates that the Prince Purunan was very angry.

Other gendings he composed for the same purpose include Wani Rute: (Wani = dare, Rute =  wounded heart) and Banteng Loreng (a fierce black bull).

Prince Purunan’s anger was noticed by one of the wali, Sunan Kalojogo.    He advised  Prince Purunan, “Don’t be angry.  Prince Hadi Wijoyo iss a wise and knowledgeable man.  Don’t continue your anger.”  

Sunan Kalijogo softened the gendhing. He changed karang gayam to kembang gayam. He said, “if you want to be praised and respected, this time is not your time”.   

After Prince Purunan died, he was buried in Legen village, in Klaten. Every Friday and Tuesday which fall upon a kliwon day, people come to his grave to ask for blessings.

Singa Nebah is played in Laras Slendro, like Tropongbang.  Nartosabdho composed its vocal.  It is also played in Bimo Kordo.  (Bimo – Bima, Kordo – agile movement)

9. Rena-rena, Slendro Nem
Rena-rena often plays for wayang orang.

Rena-rena means miscellaneous or various.

While Rena-rena is usually in the form of lancaran slendro pathet nem, all the notes are played in this rendition. Rena-rena is used in Pelog Barang for the dance Kukulo choreographed by S Maridi,

It is also used for the dance Gambir Anom.  This is a children’s dance which is performed by young children.

10. Ricik-Ricik Slendro Manyura
Ricik-ricik describes the sound of trickling water.

In wayang, this gending is used to describe the sound of water continuously trickling from a mountain.

Ricik-ricik is also often used in wayang orang (wayang performance which uses people instead of puppets) and wayang kulit (shadow puppet performance), especially to depict a villain. It has no vocal element. It is an instrumental gending, and uses soran.

Soran means a loud voice.   This gending usually played at the beginning so people know from the character of this gending, what their part in the whole performance will be.

Ricik-ricik is also used as an exercise gending for beginners in learning karawitan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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