PH hosts 1st international gongs, bamboo music fest in Dipolog, Iloilo


12:34 AM February 7th, 2013

February 7th, 2013 12:34 AM

Maguindanao Kulintang Ensemble in Cotabato City. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines will host the very first International Gongs and Bamboo Music Festival in Dipolog City from February 16 to 22, and Maasin, Iloilo from February 22-26.  Dubbed as “Tunogtugan Festival,” the seven-day celebration will gather some of the finest gongs and bamboo ensembles and scholars from the Philippines and different parts of Asia.

Tunogtugan will provide an exciting experience of the gongs and bamboo traditions of the countries of China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, South Korea and the Philippines through performances, an exhibit, workshops and a conference.

Tunogtugan will not only demonstrate the great variety of musical expressions and performance practices that have developed and evolved in these countries, but also explore the variety of theoretical and social issues that are related to the music of gongs and bamboo.

“The gongs and bamboo permeate practically all the musical traditions in Southeast Asia,” says Dr. Ramon P. Santos, festival director of Tunogtugan and highly respected composer and musicologist of the Philippines.

Dr. Santos explains that “in the musical cultures of Southeast Asia, gongs and bamboo have been in existence for thousands of years.  They mirror the entire life of the peoples– a life of spirituality, subsistence, and a life of communing with the natural environment.

These instruments then express a cosmology of beliefs, which sustain the existence and the dynamism of everyday life in the villages as well as in the aristocratic courts in Southeast Asia.”

The festival will celebrate the genius of Filipino musicians and creators, and their Asian counterparts and trace the roots of gongs and bamboo music traditions, showing its relation to the Asian way of life. It will also provide a venue for artists to interact and share their musical traditions and research works and to come-up with materials on gongs and bamboo music for schools and educational institutions.

The Festival will also stage performances in Metro Manila from February 27- 28.

Tunogtugan is a project of The National Commission for Culture and the Arts- National Music Committee (NCCA-NMC) through the Musicological Society of the Philippines (MSP) in partnership with the Dipolog City Government in cooperation with Municipality of Maasin-Iloilo and the UP Center for Ethnomusicology (UPCE).

For inquiries call telefax: (02) 926-0028 or email

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