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Music of Bali Ensemble

The Music of Bali Ensemble features gamelan (the generic Indonesian word for orchestra) music and dance. The Balinese gamelan gong kebyar is famous for its fast tempos, abrupt changes of texture, and brilliantly costumed dancers who act out stories from the Ramayana. Directed by I Nyoman Wenten, the Music of Bali Ensemble is one of twelve world music performance ensembles in the Department of Ethnomusicology.

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Mariachi de Uclatlán

Mariachi de Uclatlán is closely linked to the UCLA Music of Mexico ensemble, currently taught by Grammy Award-winning Jesús Guzmán. Mr. Guzmán is the artistic director for the world-renowned Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano, and has been teaching the music of Mexico ensemble since 1991.

Mariachi de Uclatlán began in the 1960s, making it one of the first mariachi groups to be formed in an academic university setting.

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World Music Concentration

Students in the world music undergraduate concentration learn about the musical systems of selected world cultures through aural and written notations, vocal and instrumental skills, melodic and rhythmic dictation, improvisation, and composition.

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Jazz Ensembles

Participation in the jazz large ensembles (big bands) and the small group combos is an important part of training for students in the undergraduate jazz studies concentration.

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UCLA Ethnomusicology Archive

Founded in 1961, the UCLA Ethnomusicology Archive is one of the largest “world music” media archives in North America. The Archive holds over 150,000 recordings of traditional, folk, popular, and art musics from Africa, Asia, Australia and the Pacific islands, Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas. In the Archive, UCLA students and faculty, international researchers, and the communities of Southern California can explore the rich variety of musical expressions throughout the world.

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Music of China Ensemble

The Music of China Ensemble performs arias from Kun opera of the 15th century, silk-and-bamboo music from the Shanghai area, folk dances for festive celebration, zheng (zither) music in the Keijia style from Canton Province, music for large percussion ensemble, and modern compositions for an ensemble of traditional Chinese wind and string instruments. Directed by Li Chi, the Music of China Ensemble is one of twelve world music performance ensembles in the Department of Ethnomusicology.

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Jazz Studies Concentration

The jazz studies concentration, directed by Kenny Burrell, seeks to train students who will emerge as outstanding and well-rounded jazz musicians with a strong academic foundation, and to prepare students to enter professional careers in the music world as well as graduate study, in various aspects of music such as composition, arranging, jazz performance, research, and teaching.

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Bluegrass and Old Time

​ The Bluegrass and Old-Time String Ensemble (also known as the Anglo-American Ensemble, the Blue Grasshoppers, and the Bluegrass and Old-Time String Band), performs traditional music of America, with a focus on American folk music and bluegrass. Bluegrass was created in the first half of the 20th century and can be traced back to older genres of Celtic, English and Scottish, African-American, and country music.

Of Special Note

Thai Instrument Metamorphosis

The UCLA Thai instruments have "learned to sing again" after a complex repair process initated by Dr. Helen Rees, professor of ethnomusicology and director of UCLA's World Musical Instrument Collection. These newly restored instruments will now be used for classes and performances, supported in part by gifts from the Royal Thai Consulate-General of Los Angeles and the Thai Community Arts and Cultural Center. READ MORE

Welcome New Students!

The Department of Ethnomusicology welcomes new undergraduate students and new graduate students to UCLA for the fall 2015 quarter.

Sounds of Schoenberg: The banjo

Ph.D. student Scott Linford discusses the banjo for a Daily Bruin series featuring instruments from the department's World Musical Instrument Collection and their performers. READ MORE

UCLA Moves Forward to Formally Establish Independent Herb Alpert School of Music

Following a comprehensive review and approval by faculty leaders and administrators, UCLA is asking the University of California to formally establish the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music as the UC system’s first independent music school. READ MORE