Indigenous Music and Instruments of the South Pacific
Time & Location
About the Event
Prepare to embark on a Trans-Pacific journey as ethnomusicologist Jim Berenholtz takes us in his musical canoe to tropical islands large and small. Our special focus will be on the huge and richly biodiverse island of New Guinea, where we find massive log drums, giant bamboo flutes and trumpets, hourglass-shaped wooden drums with lizard skin heads, and bamboo panpipes. As we travel to other parts of Melanesia like Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands, Jim will show us ankle rattles made from seed pods and elaborate headdresses used in ceremonial dances. Then we launch into the Polynesian triangle, from Aotearoa (New Zealand) with a tiny percussion instrument made from macadamia nuts, to Tahiti and the Marquesas Islands with their log drums and wooden trumpets. Heading further east to Rapa Nui (Easter Island) we will be shown some unique ritual artifacts from this distinctive island culture. Then north to the Hawaiian Islands, to see more innovative uses of bamboo for making music, and to hear sacred chants and conch shell trumpets.