Closing concert of Tunog Tugan Festival | Dipolog City | Mindanao, Philippines
Conductor: Chino Toledo

100 traditional gong & bamboo performers



“Imagine an open space on a tropical island and more than 100 people that play together with only two types of instruments: gong and bamboos (…) These are people arriving from the rest of the Philippines and from Malaysia, Indonesia, Burnei, Thailand, Korea, Vietnam and many more (…) This is a global music concert, a universal language that everybody could understand and cherish”
(La Repubblica daily, Italy, February 2013)


Sample score - Download

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On February 21, 2013, 100 traditional Asian musicians of gongs and bamboo music had played as one to interpret Karagatan, as a closing piece for the Tunog-tugan Festival, the First International Gongs and Bamboo Festival which takes place from February 16 to 22 in Dipolog City, February 22 to 26 in Maasin, Iloilo and February 27 to 28 in Metro Manila, Philippines. Karagatan (Filipino term for ocean) is a rare musical experience, bringing together modern and traditional as well as disciplined and freestyle expressions.

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Festival Director and noted Filipino Composer and ethnomusicologist, Dr. Ramon P. Santos (former vice president of IMC UNESCO) explains the great challenge of this work: "The ancient gongs and bamboo instruments are not tempered like western instruments. In contrast to western instruments that follow a notation system and have specific pitches and tones, in the gong & bamboo culture there are no canonized standards for sound production, pitch or rhythm. Instead of homogeneous you have pluralism, instead of hierarchy you need to wish for unity.”

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In the score’s preference, Yuval writes: “KARAGATAN means in Tagalog (the main language in the Philippines) Ocean. The Ocean for the Filipino people carries strong contrasting meanings – it is a border, a horizon, a nourishing source, a territory of fantasy and legend. It is connected with the memory of cruel invasions and with multicultural dialogue and peaceful interactions. In December 3, 2012, just two and a half month before the beginning of “Tunog-Tugan” 1st International Gongs & Bamboo music Festival, the horrible Typhoon Bopha attacked the coasts of the island of Mindanao, taking the lives of more than one thousand people, and leaving many other thousands without roof and shelter. I dedicate this composition to the memory of the men, women and children lost in this great tragedy, and to the spirit of the Filipino people, which will always find strength to overcome difficulty with hope, courage and great humanity.”

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