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Join me on a life-changing study abroad to Bali, Indonesia! 

 May 14- June 3, 2017

Course Description

Participants in this summer study abroad will travel to Bali, Indonesia from May 15, 2017- June 3, 2017 and immerse themselves in Balinese arts and culture. Through daily discussions and engagement with Balinese arts (gamelan music, dance, puppet making, and mask making) students will gain a profound understanding of the social and cultural dimensions of Balinese life, as the arts are inextricably linked to Balinese religion, history, language, and philosophy. Further engagement with Balinese arts and culture will happen through assigned readings; visits to museums, cultural sites and temples; attendance at cultural performances and celebrations; and guest lectures with Balinese culture bearers (see syllabus and schedule for specific activities). The course will be led by Duquesne Visiting Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology Meghan Hynson and will be co-taught by Colorado College’s gamelan teacher I Made Lasmawan and by the esteemed Balinese mask maker and dancer Ida Bagus Anom Suryawan. The course can be taken to fulfill the Global Diversity or Creative Arts CORE Curriculum requirement and will be open to all Duquesne University students. The course is also be open to CMU and Pitt students to enroll as visiting Duquesne students during the summer semester; however, first priority will be given to Duquesne students. Max 16 participants.

Course Objectives

In keeping with Duquesne University’s mission to shape young adults into global citizens and provide them with creative experiences that enhance overall intelligence, participants in this summer study abroad will travel to Bali, Indonesia and immerse themselves in Balinese culture. Through daily hands-on workshops and lessons in music and the arts, students will be taught musical and artistic skills and also gain a profound understanding of Balinese culture, religion, and society by visiting temples and cultural sites. Reinforcement of these themes will happen through performance reports, reading/discussion questions, and a final project presentation and short paper. All students will present and perform their musical or artistic accomplishments in a small concert and exhibition on the last day of the trip, being sure to structure their project based on the objectives outlined for their track.

Why travel to Bali with Dr. Hynson?

Bali, Indonesia is particularly well-suited to achieve all of these learning objectives, as music and the arts are inextricably linked to all aspects of Balinese religion, culture, language, and social stratification. Temple celebrations and festivities related to the Balinese calendar are constantly happening each day, which means that students are sure to encounter unique aspects of Balinese culture regardless of when they travel there (as opposed to traveling to another location and having to time a trip to coincide with specific cultural events). In addition, Balinese arts are accessible enough that students can engage in producing and performing them with little or no experience. Bali, Indonesia is a safe destination for students to engage with the food, climate, agriculture, and ways of living in Southeast Asia that are starkly different than those they are accustomed to. The weather is warm and tropical and many people speak English, as tourism is the island's main source of income. 

Between 2007 and 2015, I spent nearly four years living in Bali, Indonesia. This was the site of my doctoral research on Balinese music, culture, religion, and shadow puppet theater. While living in Bali, I was a consultant and tour guide for several summer programs and cultural tours such as SIT (School for International Training) and Cross-Cultural Journeys, and accompanied these groups to meet and study with Balinese artists, religious scholars, and historians. I have personally presented and lectured on aspects of Balinese culture in my university courses, at invited lectures, and at workshops connected to the Bali Spirit World Music Festival, and am well connected to the Balinese arts university (ISI Denpasar), Udayana University for liberal arts, and the University for Balinese religion. I am fluent in the Indonesian national language (Bahasa Indonesia) and have proficiency in Balinese, which makes me well-positioned to offer students a unique opportunity to engage with Balinese culture and connect with the indigenous people.


My first co-leader, Ida Bagus Anom Suryawan, is a renowned Balinese musician, dancer, mask maker and puppeteer. He speaks fluent Indonesian, Balinese, and English and travels internationally to present and give workshops of Balinese masks, puppetry, religion, and dance. We will also be working with professor I Made Lasmawan who teaches Balinese arts at Colorado College. He speaks fluent English and has had a lot of experience leading groups of study abroad students to Bali. His community center, Sanggar Manik Galih, has been designed to accommodate study abroad students.

In Bali, students will:

-  Learn about the arts, culture, food and religion of Bali and Southeast Asia, generally

- Engage in puppet making, dance, and gamelan music lessons (no experience necessary)

- Visit temples, rice terraces, volcanoes, coffee plantations, museums, beaches, the monkey forest, and more!

- Witness ceremonies and performances and learn from master Balinese artists, scholars, and healers


Trip cost: $5000

Cost Includes:

- 3 credits (MUNM 194) from Duquesne (can be taken for creative arts or global diversity credit)

- Round trip airfare to and from USA to Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia

- All ground transportation in Bali

- All accommodations 

- All meals

- Admission to all scheduled sites and activities

Important Deadlines and Dates for Pre-Departure Meetings and Info Sessions

Max 16 students. Informational meetings will be held in the School of Music on February 9 in room 107, and March 15

and April 10 in room 201 at 7pm.


Applications and a refundable deposit are due March 1st. Non-refundable deposits of $1500 to hold your space on the trip

are due March 15, 2017. Final payment will be due on April 15, 2017.


Please click on the Word doc icon below to download the application or e-mail Dr. Hynson at

For full consideration, Applications and an initial refundable deposit of $200 are due by March 1st.


Visiting Students: Although this trip will be open to Duquesne University students first, students

from other universities are welcome and encouraged to apply. In addition to filling out the

application form, visiting students will also need to fill out the form found here:

- Application - Select Adult Learners Non-Degree

- After submitting the appropriate application send an email to indicating the class or classes you are interested in.

What to prepare for the trip:

- Current Passport

- Vaccinations: Hepatitus A and Typhoid

- Audio recording device (if you have one)

- Camera (if you have one)

- Comfortable, conservative, lightweight clothing (please avoid spaghetti strap tank tops and short skirts and shorts)

- A light jacket or sweatshirt (a lightweight raincoat can sometimes comes in handy)

- Mosquito repellent

- Sandals/lightweight shoes

- Sneakers/comfortable walking shoes

- Ladies: Feminine products (these can sometimes be hard to come by)

- $20-$30 to purchase a sarong and traditional ceremonial gear 

- Spending money for souvenirs

Textbook and Course Materials

These books can be purchased online from Amazon (this is the cheapest option).

1. Suggested reading before departure:

Covarrubias, Miguel. 1965. Island of Bali. New York: Knopf.

2. During your stay, there will be assigned chapters from the following book. You should purchase this and bring the book

with you on your trip.

Eiseman, Fred. B. 1990. Bali Sekala and Niskala, Volume 1: Essays on Religion Ritual and 

Art. Hong Kong: Periplus Editions.


Accommodations: Names, addresses, and phone numbers of all housing/hotel facilities.

Surya Kembar Villas: Surya Kembar Villas sits along the Titibatu River, situated on sacred lands in Kandangan, Mas, Ubud, Bali. The Villas are custom designed featuring recycled wood, natural stone, and vertical orchid gardens with private swimming pools and a yoga studio, making it a magical place to learn. The villas has safety deposti boxes, free wifi and 24-hour security.

Banjar Kumbuh

Mas, Ubud

Indonesia 80571

(+62) 361 971 812



Sanggar Manik Galih: This is a Balinese arts, music and dance compound in Baturiti. We will spend 4 days here learning about rice cultivation, seeing sights, and participating in music and art activities. This compound is owned by Colorado College professor and Balinese music specialist I Made Lasmawan. He will be hosting us!  

Banjar Bangah, Baturiti

Tabanan Bali, Indonesia

 (+62) 368- 21583

Travel Arrangements:

All students traveling to Bali will leave together from Pittsburgh on May 14 (we will arrive late on the 15th). Flights will be booked through a travel agent and it is not possible to use personal frequent flier miles (University policy). It is possible to extend your stay in Bali, but this must be noted beforehand on your application, with definite travel dates specified. Travel from a different location must be discussed with Dr. Meghan Hynson prior to March 15.


Contact information for all responsible faculty/adults who are accompanying

1. Meghan Hynson –(215)-353-3485 (US#)  (+62) 81 238 194 102 (Bali#)

2. Ida Bagus Anom Suryawan  (+62) 81 338 448 444

3. I Made Lasmawan 719-321-1591 (US#) (+62) 368-21583 (Bali)#

4. Dayu Nonick (wife of Anom Suryawan who will also assist from time to time) (+62) 812 380 1921

5. Accommodations: Surya Kembar Villas – (+62) 361 971 812  Sanggar Manik Galih - (+62) 368-21583 

Health and emergencies

Students should prepare for their trip and make sure they are vaccinated for hepatitis. While there is not malaria in Bali, there are rare cases of dengue fever. There are no precautionary medications or vaccinations that can be taken to prevent this except wearing repellents and staying away from stagnant water. All bedrooms are equipped with mosquito nets at the hotel. All students will be advised of the signs and symptoms of dengue fever, and in the rare case that someone contracts this, the medical facilities and hospitals are very prepared to handle it. I have been traveling to Bali for over 8 years and have never contracted this illness. It is mostly found in rural areas and we will be near the main cultural center of Ubud. Many Balinese live there for their whole lives and never contract the disease, so I am quite confident that this will not be a problem.


The following vaccinations are recommended but not required for travel to Indonesia:

-Hepatitis A (all travelers)

-Typhoid (travelers who may eat or drink outside major hotels or restaurants)


Names, addresses, and phone nos. of the nearest medical/dental/mental health facilities

1. Toyo Clinic (Ubud) Jalan Raya Pengosekan (East of Gas Sation), Ubud, Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia +62 361 978078

2. Rumah Sakit Ari Canti Jl. Raya Mas, MAS, Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar +62 361 974573

3. Ubud Clinic and Pharmacy Jl Raya Campuhan, Ubud, Bali +62 (0) 361 974911

4. Sayan Aesthetic Clinic (Dentist) Jalan Penestanan, Ubud, Bali +62 (0)361 972648

5. Sanglah Hospital (only for major emergencies): Jalan Diponegoro Denpasar Bali (80114). +62 (0361) (0361) 227911-15

6. Baturiti: Dr. I Made Toya (+62) 368-21583


Medex Hospital 

Provider Name: Kasih Ibu Hospital
Address: Jalan Teuku Umar 120
City: Denpasar
State: Bali
Country: Indonesia
Postal Code: 80114
International Phone: +62 361 300 3030
Local Phone: 300 3030
Comments: This private hospital is one of the best options for care in Bali. It has an Emergency Room (ER) open 24/7, a laboratory and a pharmacy. Smaller medical centers in Bali transfer the most serious patients to Kasih Ibu Hospital.

High Risk Activities and Drug and Alcohol Policy

There are no high risk activities associated with this program. Students are not allowed to rent motorbikes. It is vitally important that students do not engage in drug consumption given Indonesian penalties (jail time, fines, even death). Beer is available in restaurants, but meals will be monitored and students will pledge to abstain from consumption. 


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