Located on Jalan Padasuka in the south Bandung area, Saung Angklung Udjo established in 1966. The late Udjo Ngalagena with his wife, Uum Sumiati founded this place as a studio performing arts, educational laboratories as well as cultural attractions typical of West Java.
Saung Angklung Udjo and his students have won several regional championships in terms of regional arts. For his work, the late Udjo himself was dubbed the Legend of Angklung, namely Angklung as fine art and cultural identity.
“I got a message from Daeang Soetigna (Alm), to continue his mission of introducing Angklung to all people throughout the world, to be known everywhere, with the idea that through the performance of Angklung’s musical art, will be able to create peace in the world, which we love and we live in this. “
The admission at Saung Angklung Udjo varies. For normal days, local visitors (WNI) have to pay Rp50.000 for children, Rp70.000 for adults while foreign tourists’ price is Rp100.000. On weekends and holidays, the price of a ticket for local visitors (WNI) is Rp55.000 for children, Rp75.000 for adults while for foreign tourists is Rp120.000.
The performing arts in Saung Angklung Udjo for Monday to Saturday is conducted once at 15:30 WIB, whereas on Sundays or national holidays the performances are held twice, namely at 10.00 WIB and 15.30 WIB. The show lasts for approximately 2 hours. Because of the large number of visitors from overseas, the MC will guide the audience bilingually with Indonesian and English.
The first show was a demonstration of Wayang Golek. Wayang Golek is one of the Sundanese distinctive cultures in the form of staging wooden puppets that resemble the human body complete with costumes that are dialogued and moved by a Dalang. Wayang Golek is usually performed as part of traditional Sundanese ceremonies.
Philosophically, the word wayang which means the shadow is a reflection of the nature in the human soul, such as anger, virtue, greed, etc. In the puppet show, the puppeteer will bring a story containing moral messages so that we always obey God and do good to others. As words that often guide Indonesian people in general, whoever plants goodness will reap goodness. Likewise, the person who commits a crime will also suffer the consequences of the crime he committed.
Usually, the Wayang Golek show lasts for 7 hours, but in Saung Angklung Udjo will only be shown a demonstration of how Wayang talks, dances, and fights. Favourite figure in the Wayang Golek is Depot.
Next, there is the Helaran show. This art is usually also played to accompany traditional circumcision ceremonies and rice harvest ceremonies as offerings to Dewi Sri (Rice Goddess in the ancient Javanese story). Angklung is represented with the tone Salendro / Pentatonic, namely the original sound of Sundanese angklung consisting of Da Mi Na Ti La Da. Helaran is often played cheerfully because it shows gratitude for the blessings the farmers get.
After the Helaran performance, visitors will be invited to watch the traditional dance. Usually, the Mask Dance is shown which consists of two acts. The first round where the dancers do not wear masks and the second round when they wear masks. The next dance is the Peacock Dance which expresses the movements of a peacock that is lively in the beauty of its charming feather colours. But unfortunately, when I visited Saung Angklung Udjo, the Peacock Dance was not performed.
Mini Angklung, Arumba, Bulk Angklung, and playing Angklung together are part of a series of art offerings at Angklung Udjo. Angklung-angklung minimalist size is not only used as decoration but can be used to play simple songs. Visitors will be distributed one by one to sing several songs together with the host. The songs sung are the most popular in many countries, including Indonesia. This is the most exciting part of the event. Because we, from the visitor’s side, can interact and feel directly with the sensation of a peaceful rhythm that comes out when the tones are chime together. A good angklung harmony will be created if there is cohesiveness between players. This suggests that through Angklung, peace will be established since music is universal. So Angklung can be used as a means of unifying all cultural differences. At the end of the event, the studio’s sons and daughters will choose several audiences to be invited to dance together.