Marimba – the marimba provides the melody. Made from bamboo and Philippine hardwood, it follows the musical scale and style of the typical xylophone and a marimba in an orchestra. Mallets made out of rattan and rubber are used to play the instrument. Similar to a piano, there’s a higher, middle and lower scale.
Angklung – is a traditional Asian instrument, variations of which can be found in countries like Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. The angklung provides counterpoints to the melody. Each angklung represents a note and is played by shaking the lower part with one hand while holding the upper end steady.
Bumbong – hollow pieces of bamboo put together and serve as the orchestra’s wind section – divided into “bass” (lower) and “horn” (higher) sections. The smaller the bamboo, the higher the note. Each piece of bamboo represents one note and is blown through a mouthpiece to produce the sound.
Pan Pipe – are small pieces of bamboo put together by a string and is similar in sound and stylings of the wind instruments found in Northern Philippines and in South America. Each piece of bamboo represents a note and is blown to produce the sound. The fan pipes provide counterpoints to the basic melody.
Kiskis – is a bamboo piece with ridges and serves as a percussion instrument. “Kiskis” is a Filipino word for “to scratch” or “to rub against something”. It is played by “rubbing” a rattan stick on its ridges.
Kalatok – is a percussion instrument, with pieces of bamboo with varying tones strung together. The instrument’s name was derived from the first two syllables of the conductor’s surname “Kala” and the “tok” sound that it produces when struck by a rubber mallet.
Kalagong – is a wind instrument which also provides bass and sometimes the melody for select musical pieces. Bamboo poles each representing a note are held together by a wooden frame and are played when two paddles made of rubber slippers are struck on each of the hollow bamboo tubes. The name of the instrument comes from the first two syllables of the conductor’s name “kala” and the “gong” for the gong-like sound that it produces when struck by the paddle.
From left to right: Kiskis, a rubber mallet, Kalatok and Kalagong.