Get to know! 5 Kinds of Gorontalo Musical Instruments

In the Sulawesi Island region, Gorontalo is the youngest province, because it was only formed from the division in 2000. Even so, don’t question the local culture, because the people of Gorontalo are known to be steadfast in the customs that have been passed down from generation to generation by their ancestors.

One form of this culture is from the field of art, namely in the form of a Gorontalo musical instrument. In the following, we review the various kinds of Gorontalo musical instruments, both in terms of the material for which they are made, to how to play them. Please read

Types and Images of Gorontalo Musical Instruments

1. Wahulo

Wahulo is a traditional Gorontalo musical instrument that looks similar to a tambourine. To play it, it must be held with one hand, while the other hand pats Wahulo. Like the Rebana music game, Wahulo’s musical instrument also applies its own playing method in the performances and the songs that accompany it.

Wahulo and Rebana have fundamental differences in the form of leather binding they use. This musical instrument has a peculiarity in its woven rattan which tends to be tight. But, unfortunately, this instrument is difficult to find, because craftsmen are also rare and hard to find.

2. Polopalo

Polopalo is a typical Gorontalo musical instrument made from bamboo. At first glance, this musical instrument is similar to a tuning fork in a giant size. The way to play it is by hitting it with the knee.

But, over time, this tool now has its own bat, which is made of wood and coated with rubber. This modification makes Polopalo easier to play, as well as avoiding pain in the limbs. With the bat, Polopalo’s voice sounded louder than being played with the knee.

Polopalo is a type of idiophonic musical instrument, which produces sound from its own body. Because, if Polopalo gets hit, the sound it generates comes from the vibrations of the body of the musical instrument.

In ancient times, Polopalo was widely used to repel birds that ate rice in rice fields. In addition, this instrument is also used as a pendant for cow necklaces and spools of thread for women.

Unique, isn’t the use of Polopalo? Well, that’s why, Indonesian culture has become the main attraction for foreign tourists. Like other regional cultures reviewed on You can read reviews about traditional culture on the portal, for example Tari Remo.

3. Ganda (Gendang Gorontalo)

Ganda is a Javanese drum-like musical instrument, with two membrane sides of animal skin. Compared to the Javanese drum, this traditional Gorontalo musical instrument is slimmer and smaller.

To play a musical instrument in this membranophonic category, the method is quite easy, because there is no need for special techniques for its performance. Doubles are only played by hitting or tapping, so as to produce the desired rhythm.

4. Marwas (Marawis Gorontalo)

Marwas is a traditional Gorontalo musical instrument, which is played by tapping or being hit on the side of the membrane. This membrane itself, is made using animal skin. Generally, Marwas are played in groups in a percussion performance, because if they are played singly, they are usually less pleasant to hear.

Usually, Marwas is played to accompany songs with the theme of praise to God Almighty. There is also a belief that Marwas actually came from the Middle East, which was later adopted by the local community.

5. Gambusi (Gambus Gorontalo)

The Gambus musical instrument is quite synonymous with Malay culture. Not only in Gorontalo, in general, this tool is also scattered in several regions to become a means of spreading Islam in Indonesia.

Gambus Gorontalo is equipped with 9 strings, which make a distinctive sound. Generally, this instrument is played simultaneously with Rebana Wahulo or other traditional Gorontalo musical instruments.


This is our review of the Gorontalo musical instrument above. We hope that all readers will get new insights into what we have discussed. thanks.

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