6 Papuan Musical Instruments, the Functions, and How to Play Them

goodmorningpapua.com – Almost every region in Indonesia has traditional musical instruments, including Papua. Papuan musical instruments are generally from wood, bamboo, and leather. But there are also those made of clam shells. This relates to the area in which they live.

The function of indigenous musical instruments from Papua is generally almost the same as other regional musical instruments in Indonesia, namely for traditional events, celebrations, parties, or entertainment. Some of them serve to gather the community.

Papua is not only famous for its carvings and natural beauty, but also for its musical instruments. The following is a list of unique Papuan musical instruments, citing the Ministry of Education and Culture’s High School Cultural Arts Learning Module.

1. Tifa

Tifa is made of leather and wood. Having a shape resembling a drum, Tifa is a membranophone musical instrument.It is a musical instrument whose sound source comes from a membrane made of animal skin or other leather imitation materials. Tifa will sound when the membrane or skin vibrates.

How to play tifa that is beaten with the palm of the hand. Usually, the left hand holds the tifa, and the right hand is used to beat and pat it.

Tifa functions as a rhythmic musical instrument, which is a musical instrument that does not have a tone and is intended to maintain the tempo or beat of the music.

Tifa is divided into several types, namely jekir, cut, basic, and bass. Apart from Papua, Tifa is also found in Maluku. However, the both forms are different. The middle part of the tifa from Papua is more curved and can be held. Meanwhile, tifa from Maluku is shaped like a tube and the middle part cannot

2. Pikon

Pikon is often functioned by the Dani tribe of Papua for entertainment and to relieve fatigue.

Pikon is made of bamboo. It is about 5.2 cm long. In the middle, a vibrating stick and a string are set to produce a variety of sounds.

The way to play the pikon is by blowing the center of the bamboo that has been given a hole while pulling the rope connected to the stick.

3. Triton

Triton is made of shells that have been perforated. Initially, before it became a musical instrument, the triton was used as a calling tool or to signal citizens. How to play it, just blow one side of the shell.

4. Fuu

Fuu musical instruments are made of wood or bamboo with a small hole on one side and a large hole on the other. Fuu generally have carvings on the outside.

How to play Fuu is by blowing the small hole. This musical instrument is not only used to accompany various dances but also has a social function, namely to summon residents.

5. Krombi

Krombi is made of bamboo whose the top is slashed so that the inside of the bamboo is visible. How to play the krombi is to beat it with a bamboo stick the size of a drumstick. The function of this musical instrument is an accompaniment for traditional ceremonies or traditional parties.

6. Guoto

Guoto is made of bamboo slats whose tops are slashed to form strings. The strings are bolstered by wood so that they can produce sound. The shape of the guoto at first glance is similar to the traditional Sundanese musical instrument, the celempung.

However, the way to play it is different. Guoto is played by plucking the strings. Meanwhile, the Celempung is played by beating the string and playing the hole on the side. Guoto is usually played to welcome guests, accompany dances or rituals. Those are some Papuan musical instruments along with their functions and how to play them.

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