Indonesian Extravaganza 2007

This year the Australia Indonesia Arts Alliance presented three major school events. The first Indonesian Extravaganza 2007 was presented at North Ryde Public School. Two major Indonesian cultural concerts were also presented for the children in the North Coast Region, at Evans River K-12 and Mullumbimby High School. The Indonesia Extravaganzas were a wonderful success with over 700 children from various schools attending the concerts. Promotion, coordination and emceeing was undertaken by Judy Shelley, AIAA National Coordoinator.

AIAA and Nth Ryde Public School express sincere appreciation to Alfira O’Sullivan, Judy Shelley and Mike Burns for presenting a wonderful workshop and concert program including Sumatran dance, Javanese gamelan, Balinese and Javanese dance, Sundanese music and Sumatran martial arts. Aftrer a one hour workshop all 100 children involved in the project were able to present their own music and dance performances to the rest of the students.

At Evans River on 29 October, AIAA Board Member, gamelan musician and radio presenter Dharma Bradridge gave his debut performance as Rangda along with Bpk Nyoman Suma as the Barong. Workshops in Pencat Silat, Gamelan and Balinese dance were presented by Jason, Dharma and Ibu Sri. The children performed gamelan and the Gold Coast Balinese Dance Group presented a range of beautiful dances including Pendet and Panji Semirang. The Perisai Diri Group from Byron Bay astounded the children with their stunning martial arts display. According to their school teacher Tracie Lee – all the children loved the show.

The Indonesian Extravaganza at Mullumbimby High School was held on 22 November as a combined schools concert with students from Mullumbimby Public School, St Johns Catholic School, Shearwater Steiner School, Fernleigh Public School, Newrybar Public School, as well as Mullumbimby High. Ibu Vera Kos from the Gold Coast Indonesian Dance Group taught the children a variety of dances from various parts of Indonesia with some incredible music and costumes. Ibu Vera also dressed the children for a traditional costume fashion parade. Ibu Sri, Sophia, Sandra and Bpk Nyoman from the Balinese Community of the Gold Coast performed a range of gorgeous traditional Balinese dances. The students really loved to hear the music and especially to see the beautiful costumes. The Perisai Diri group and Dharma also provided workshops and performances resulting in a packed program which was bursting at the seams.

The Indonesian Extravaganza brought the beauty and magic of our Indonesian neighbors’ culture closer to home for many of these children and was an exciting and positive experience for everyone involved.

Indroduction by Judy Shelley at Evans River K-12

“Selamat Siang Anak-anak. Nama saya Ibu Shelley – my name is Miss Shelley.

In every corner of the world, in every country, in every culture – there is secret wisdom to be learned. In every religion and philosophy – there are clues – mysteries to be revealed.

“If we find each piece of wisdom and bring them together – if we find each piece of the jigsaw puzzle and put them all together – will we not then find the way of peace.

“If we seek the truth in every corner of the earth and every wise thought of women and men of every race – will we not then find the way to live in harmony with each other and the earth.

“The time has come for us to open our minds and hearts to seek the truth in every philosopohy. There is knowledge, wisdom, kindness, forgiveness – love and compassion held within every religion, culture and every belief –

“Here in the North Coast, our community is made up of people of every culture and ethnicity, we also have our own Indonesian community here – Our tiny rural Indonesian community represents most religions and ethnic groups of Indonesia- we have Australian Muslims, Indonesian Christians, Balinese Hindus – all the families of our community are of mixed Australian and Indonesian ancestory and include many different ethnic backgrounds – Balinese, Javanese, Chinese, Sundanese, Australian, Dutch, Scottish, French, Jewish as well as people from Lombok, Moluku, Sulawesi, Kalimantan……

We are here today at the invitation of your teachers, who asked us to share with you some part of the culture that we love – the culture of our close neighbour and friend – Indonesia – and to remind you that we are all part of one global village – a beautiful village filled with colourful, exciting people and cultures who love life and love peace. So enjoy today – selamat menikmati”.

Contact: judybyronbay@yahoo.com