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Voices in Bali
Energies and Perceptions in Vocal Music and Dance Theater
Edward Herbst; Judith Becker, fwd.; René T. A. Lysloff, afterword


1998 • 218 pp. 21 illus. 30 musical notations. 6 x 9"

$19.95 Paperback, 978-0-8195-6319-4
$15.99 Ebook, 978-0-8195-7328-5

Check your ebook retailer or local library for ebook availability.

Audio CD.

“There are marvelous translations of poetry, the musical transcriptions are refined, and the accompanying CD offers excerpts of important music not featured on commercial releases. It is music essential to... [continued in Reviews below]”—Ethnomusicology

A polyphonic study of Balinese aesthetics that broadens an intercultural understanding of performance.

A scholar and trained performer of Balinese vocal music and dance, ethnomusicologist Edward Herbst brings unique talents to bear in this provocative book. The lessons of his Balinese masters enable him to offer fresh insight to this culture's aesthetics and cultural elements. Appropriating John Cage's effective style of "mixing theory, anecdote, context, philosophy, and humor," Herbst crafts an accessible body of work, compelling in substance and form. By merging the "Balinese concept of place-time-context with Cage's concepts of structure, method, and form, [Herbst] returns to the critical issue of what scholars and intercultural artists are doing, and 'what' is their 'object' under study." Undergraduates and scholars in fields as varied as theater studies and anthropology will find this book and companion CD (in print editions) an important resource not only for its knowledgeable treatment of Balinese culture, but as an example of a more personal and engaging style of scholarly discourse. The ebook edition includes embedded audio.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“There are marvelous translations of poetry, the musical transcriptions are refined, and the accompanying CD offers excerpts of important music not featured on commercial releases. It is music essential to the island's cultural ecology . . . Read this book to find out what goes into it and why it is worth being attentive to.”


“Fascinating... assumes several voices to mingle highly technical musical analysis, aesthetic considerations, meditations on Balinese traditions and how they are taught... Even a nonmusical reader can become absorbed.”—Village Voice

“...wonderfully fractured, multisided, discontinuous, nonlinear-best viewed, not wholly as science, not merely as scholarship, surely not as a traditional ethnographic outcome, but as a record of an artist's odyssey, a lover's fantasy, a devotee's mystery.”—Anthropological Linguistics

“Herbst gives the flesh where the others offer only bare bones...”—Asian Music

“Voices in Bali is a very remarkable book. In my opinion it is the first book written by a Western scholar who has really succeeded to feel and experience from within the magic exaltation of the Balinese artist during the performance of his art (music and dance and theatre).”—Anak Agung Madé Djelantik, author of Birthmark: Memoirs of a Balinese Prince

“To follow the learning process in music in the depth that Herbst makes available to us is to make a revealing journey into Balinese categories of thought. Music is as intrinsic to culture as language, itself, but it is usually learned somewhat more formally and the process is therefore easier to discern. It is a privilege to follow the author on this voyage of discernment.”—David P. McAllester

“This compelling and innovative study... offers a deeply informed-and often deeply moving-portrait... successfully confronts an array of complex epistemological and musical challenges.”—1999 Yearbook for Traditional Music

EDWARD HERBST is an ethnomusicologist on the board of directors of Arbiter Records and former assistant editor of Ethnomusicology. JUDITH BECKER is a professor of ethnomusicology at the University of Michigan. RENÉ T. A. LYSLOFF is an associate professor of music at the University of California, Riverside.

Thu, 6 Sep 2018 11:04:29 -0500