The Joged (or Joget) Bumbung instrument is so-called because of its use in an instrumental ensemble of the same name used to accompany a traditional social dance (the Joged Bumbung) in Bali. The dance features six females who are dressed in traditional costumes and who dance in sequence. During the dance, a male audience member is selected to join the female dancer when she taps him on the shoulder with her fan.
The typical ensemble used to accompany this dance comprises four instruments in slendro (pentatonic) tuning. Ensembles of this type instrument can be found not only in traditional dance settings, but also as entertainment ensembles without dancers in hotels or other tourist locations in Bali.
Bumbung, a Balinese word for “bamboo tube,”refers to the type of material used to construct each bar. The bamboo bars are cut so that the tongue remains attached to the tube of the bamboo, which functions as a resonating chamber. The bar is struck on the tongue using rubber mallets.
This instrument is one of a pair in the collection. Each has eleven bars, with a two-octave range tuned approximately to the following pitches: e-flat, f, a-flat, b-flat, c1, e-flat1, f1, a-flat1, b-flat1, c2, e-flat2. The longest of the eleven bamboo bars is 37 5/8″ (2 1/4″ diameter) and the shortest is 16″ (1 5/8″ diameter).
The frame is 31″ wide with a hand-painted panel that rises to a 16 1/2″ height above the base at the center. The trapezoidal frame for the bamboo bars is 12 1/4″ in height at the back and 9 1/2″ in height at the front edge, with a 17 1/2″ depth at the bass end and a 9 1/2″ depth at the treble end.