Suar Agung was founded in 1971 by two brothers—its current leader, I Ketut Suwentra, and the late I Nyoman Jayus—in Sangkaragung Village in the Jembrana Regency of west Bali. Yayasan Suar Agung, or Suar Agung Foundation, aims to promote Balinese music and dance performance. Suar Agung is most famous for its Jegog music, a unique style of gamelan music played on giant bamboo instruments. Jegog music was first created in the early 20th century within the farming communities of Bali's least populated province, but was banned in the 40s by its Dutch rulers who feared the bamboo tubes could be used as weapons of uprising against them.
Post-independence the jegog revival has captivated audiences worldwide by the dazzling musicality and technique of this very unique and organic gamelan. Suar Agung first visited Japan in 1975 and has toured there annually since 1984; Tokyo was the host for a collaborative concert between Suar Agung and Senegal's Doudou Ndiaye Rose and his world-famous sabar drummers in 1995. The ensemble has performed across Europe too, in France, Switzerland and Germany, including opening for the World Cup between France and Brazil in 1998.
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