Evergreen Club Contemporary Gamelan is an eight member ensemble which performs on a collection of bronze and wooden instruments that are collectively known as a gamelan. It is the traditional instrumental ensemble of the Indonesian archipelago and has been a fundamental part of Indonesian musical life for centuries. Originating from the city of Bandung in the Sundanese region of west Java, the degung style gamelan played by Evergreen Club uses a characteristic “pelog” scale consisting of five notes.
Based in Toronto, Canada, Evergreen Club is Canada’s first performing gamelan and is the only ensemble of its kind in Canada dedicated to the commissioning and performance of contemporary music. A full 90% of the music that Evergreen Club performs is commissioned by the group, the only exception being its Sundanese repertoire. Regarding this development of contemporary repertoire, Evergreen Club is unique, as there is very little contemporary music written for gamelan of any kind and repertoire for Evergreen Club’s particular style of Sundanese gamelan Degung is virtually non-existent. In the last seven years alone Evergreen Club has commissioned twenty-seven new works with another four compositions currently being written for upcoming Evergreen Club concert seasons.
The performers who make up Evergreen Club are all accomplished professional musicians; with most of the eight members involved with the group for over fifteen years. Each member has performed in numerous prominent musical organizations across Canada. All are highly committed to the further development of Evergreen Club as an innovative and successful performing, touring and recording ensemble.
Formed in 1983, Evergreen Club has performed numerous world premiere works by many leading composers including: John Cage, Gilles Tremblay, Walter Boudreau, Lou Harrison, James Tenney, John Wyre, John Celona, Jon Siddall, and Trichy Sankaran - to mention only a few.
Evergreen Club has toured extensively throughout North America, Europe and Asia and has been featured many times on CBC radio and television’s “The Journal” and “Sunday Arts Magazine”.