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Dewa Alit in conversation with Michael Tenzer


Fri Feb 8
Colloquium Series
Dewa Alit (Pengosekan, Bali) in conversation with Michael Tenzer (UBC)
Score and Parts: A Balinese Composer Writes His Way Beyond Tradition
3:30 pm, Room 400B
4th Floor, Music Building

In this forum, audiences will meet composer Dewa Alit, a distinctive figure born in 1973 into a self-sufficient world of traditional music and music education in Bali. But, growing up in a time of increasingly intense cultural exchange, as an adult he eventually sought out the means and inspiration to cross over into the language of Western contemporary music. In conversation with Michael Tenzer, a friend and collaborator since 1987, Alit will speak about the evolution of his traditional culture, the growth of his ideas and perspectives on traditional music, and its role in the world, and his ideas about composing.


Born to a family of artists in Pengosekan village in Bali, Dewa Ketut Alit was immersed in Balinese gamelan from early childhood. His father Dewa Nyoman Sura and his oldest brother Dewa Putu Berata were the most influential teachers in his life. He began performing at age 11, and by age 13 was playing ugal (leading instrument) in his village’s gamelan group. In 1998 he graduated from the Academy of Indonesian Performing Arts in Denpasar (STSI Denpasar)In 1997, he and his brothers founded Çudamani, which acquired renown locally and, through tours, internationally. Since 2000 Dewa Alit has been acknowledged as the leading composer of his generation in Bali. Since 2001, he has regularly taught internationally, including at UBC (2001-2004), and subsequently at MIT. He collaborates regularly with musicians and dancers from around the world. Seeking a wider path for expressing his approach to new music in gamelan, Dewa Alit founded his own gamelan group in 2007, Gamelan Salukat, performing on a new set of instruments of Alit’s own tuning and design. In 2014 Alit was chosen for a commission by Ensemble Modern of Frankfurt which resulted in his first orchestral work “Open My Door” (2015). This unique cross-cultural work using the media of Western classical music led to the commissioning of “Simalakama”, to be performed in Vancouver on February 9 2019.

Earlier Event: February 8