Issue of July 8, 2018
Mt. Province

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DOST-CAR initiates tech in gong-making
by Mekyla Rose Forbes

The Department of Science and Technology-Cordillera has introduced modern technology in gong fabrication in Bedbed, Mankayan, Benguet.

Dr. Arnold Inumpa, Provincial Science and Technology Benguet director, said the project is a way of preserving the culture of gong making in the Cordillera. He said it encourages the youth to learn the process of making gongs since it is currently practiced by elders in the community. The introduction of modern technology, he said, ensures the sustainability of gong production in the country.

Inumpa said the project started in February this year with the completion of the building for gong fabrication. The fabrication machines and equipment are expected to be delivered this month.

The DOST-CAR financed the project, which is implemented by the Metal Industry Research and Development Center, in partnership with the local government unit of Mankayan and headed by an organization of gong makers composed mostly of senior citizens.

Inumpa said the machines will facilitate the production of gongs, but the latter will be hammered manually so as not to sacrifice sound quality. “We have to stick to the quality based on traditional standards,” he said.

DOST-CAR Director Nancy Bantog said while the project is “a marriage of technology and Cordillera culture,” the sound of the gongs is still the primary consideration.

She added that the machines and equipment will only form and shape the gongs but the rest, especially the manual fine-tuning, will be handled by a gong maker.

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