CULTURALLY DIVERSE CAP GO MEH AT JAKARTA’S CHINATOWN
By JESSICHA VALENTINA The Jakarta Post Monday March 5, 2018
“Kabasaran”, a traditional Minahasan war dance, is among the cultural performances presented in Cap Go Meh Glodok 2018 festival on Sunday, March 4.
JAKARTA, Indonesia – Back in Soeharto’s New Order government, it probably had never crossed the minds of Chinese-Indonesians that one day they could celebrate Cap Go Meh on the streets of Jakarta, as Presidential Instruction (Inpres) No. 14/1967 banned all Chinese cultural and linguistic expressions. Fortunately, former president Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur) lifted the ban in 2001.
Fast forward to 2018, the long stretches of Jl. Hayam Wuruk and Jl. Gajah Mada in Central Jakarta were temporarily closed on Sunday. The busy streets were transformed into a carnival venue for the second installment of Cap Go Meh Glodok festival.
Under the sunshine, spectators were seen flocking to the venue from 12 p.m. The event was also attended by House of Representatives Speaker Bambang Soesatyo, People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR) Speaker Zulkifli Hasan, Coordinating Human Development and Culture Minister Puan Maharani, Communications and Information Minister Rudiantara and City Council Speaker Prasetyo Edi Marsudi.
The winners of Koko Cici Jakarta, a Chinese culture pageant organization, sing the national anthem “Indonesia Raya” during Cap Go Meh Glodok 2018 festival on Sunday. JP/Jessicha Valentina
Traditional masked dance “Reog Ponorogo” from East Java also participate in the Cap Go Meh Glodok 2018. JP/Jessicha Valentina
Students of Harapan Bangsa School perform the traditional Chinese lion dance. JP/Jessicha Valentina
The event kicked off with a marching band performance presented by Mosque Istiqlal’s Youths Marching Band Group, followed by the singing of the national anthem, led by Papuan singer Edo Kondologit.
Cap Go Meh Glodok 2018 festival presented a total of 24 groups, showcasing the archipelago’s cultural diversity, including Betawi ondel-ondel (giant puppets), traditional Minahasan war dance Kabasaran, traditional masked dance Reog Ponorogo, Chinese lion dance and more.
A dancer performs the “Kabasaran” dance from North Sulawesi. JP/Jessicha Valentina
Betawi “ondel-ondel” (giant puppets) are seen during Cap Go Meh Glodok 2018. JP/Jessicha Valentina
The event’s head of council, Charles Honoris, said during the opening that ethnic Chinese had been living in Indonesia for thousands years, making Cap Go Meh part of the local culture.
“It is our responsibility to protect [the country’s] cultural diversity,” said Charles. (kes)
From: THE JAKARTA POST (INDONESIA) Monday March 5, 2018