The universal language of music revealed Indonesia in all its diversity at a multimedia concert in Jakarta this month featuring a multitude of artists, including President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.
Ten songs written by the Indonesian president were among the "Songs of Harmony" (Tembang Harmoni) performed September 11th and 12th at the Jakarta International Expo convention centre. Legendary musicians and young breakthrough artists shared the stage.
Sandhy Sondoro and Dira Sugandi, singing “Save Or Planet”, created by Indonesia’s President, this song dedicated to all those (diplomats, politicians, officials, experts, activities and scientist, who are trying hard to find a global consensus on the issue of global warming, particularly the UN Conference on Climate Change which convened in Bali on December 2007.
"The main purpose of this concert is to send messages to all Indonesians that regardless of their ethnic groups, races, and religions, they should remain united and help develop the nation," Producer Renny Djajoesman told Khabar Southeast Asia.
"Music is a universal language, which can erase all identity boundaries of nations, countries, races, ethnicities, religions and ages as well. It has the potential power for us to live in harmony as citizens and nations," Mari Elka Pangestu, Minister of Tourism and Creative Economics, said in an introduction to the concert.
Artists who lit up the stage included Irdi Sardi, Rafika Duri, Ebiet G. Ade, Fariz R.M., Ireng Maulana, Kibound Maulana, Andi Rianto, Harvey Malaiholo, Sandhy Sondoro, Addie MS with the Twilite Orchestra, Dwiki Dharmawan, Vidi Aldiano, Cici Paramida, Dira Sugandi, Joy Tobing, Dharma Oratmangun, Andi "Rif", Addie MS, Yockie Suryo Prayogo, and Oni Krisnerwinto.
My favorite performance belongs to Eka Deli, her voice is so brilliant. I'm totally amaze with her .With sincere appreciation, she brings nationalism compassion to audience :')
Yudhoyono's creations included "Save our Planet" (Selamatkan Bumi Kita), "Beautiful Harmony" (Harmoni Yang Indah), and "For Our Earth" (Untuk Bumi Kita).
"The involvement of the president is expected to help Indonesia's music industry in order to raise awareness of young musicians, so they can enter the global music market," said Renny.
Music lovers, young and old, attended the event, which sold about 1,000 tickets and was aired on several local television stations.
Sulistyowati, a 49 year-old civil worker, came with her family. "This event was spectacular. It is refreshing and provides great entertainment for my family," she said.
"Music in Indonesia has its own merits, and we should maintain and enhance our culture. With music, we could send a message to all of Indonesia that diversity of our religions, ethnicities and cultures is our strength, our togetherness, and that we are one nation.'
Isabelle Javlyn, a 26 year-old interior designer, said, "This is an exciting event with an amazing line-up of performers, including Indonesia's senior musicians. I specifically took the time to attend an event like this that is rarely held."
Her friend Janice Tjioe, a 24 year-old interior designer, came away from the event feeling truly proud of her own culture.
"Indonesian musical instruments such as the gamelan, kecapi, and sasando Rote have been used for some international movie soundtracks. We need to improve and develop Indonesia's music. Also, we should recognise Indonesia's cultural values as our nation's strength," she said.
Jakarta resident Angelina, 26, was impressed by the concert's elaborate choreography, gorgeous costumes and dramatic multimedia effects.
Singers Rafika Duri and Harvey Malaiholo perform "Beautiful Harmony" (Harmoni Yang Indah), written by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, at a concert staged September 11th and 12th in Jakarta.