THE SOUNDS of far-away cultures have been heard wafting through the corridors of a Southwick school.
Pupils at Eastbrook primary’s Manor Hall Road site have been learning how to play gamelan – a large Balinese Indonesian percussion instrument – since September, and had their last lesson last week.
Deputy head teacher, Julie Scott, compared the gamelan to a xylophone, but with a deeper sound, and said the children had jumped at the chance to learn to play it.
“The majority of children in the school have had a chance to try it,” she said. “The lessons have been developing their listening skills, as well as their musical skills, as they have had to concentrate.
“This was an opportunity to for them to learn a little bit about the history of the instrument, and a little bit about where they come from.” She went on to say the lessons, which have been in addition to the school’s usual music classes, where pupils play instruments including the recorder, the clarinet and drums, were very calming for the children.
“They have very much enjoyed it, and have had a great time,” she said.
“We are really lucky we have the space to have such large instruments in the school.”
It is the second time Eastbrook has played host to the gamelan, the first being about three years ago.