Indonesian Weekend Festival 2019

September 30, 2019

 

A weekend-long festival of Indonesian food, culture and fashion, promoting travel to Indonesia by showcasing the best that Indonesia has to offer.

 

For the third year running Indonesian Weekend returned to Potters Field Park in London on 7th - 8th September for another triumphant festival extravaganza of music, dance, food and fun.  The excitable crowd was treated to an array of acts introduced by the MC and singer Ledi Manurung, which included the fantastic Wonderful Indonesia Band accompanied by the fabulous singer and violinist Mia Ismi (supporting a stunning multi-coloured batik skirt designed by Idha Jacinta Sh), classical Yogyakarta dance group Surya Kirana, and the ever delightful Lila Bhawa Indonesian Dance UK who threw out all their inhibitions at one point when they gave a jaw-dropping impromptu contemporary dance performance during the DJ Party hosted by Nachita. Actress, singer and author Ayu Azhar (apparently one of the highest paid actors on Indonesian television back in the 2000s) made a surprising guest appearance, much to the joy of those familiar with her work and success.

 

A select few from the crowd were chosen to take part in an angklung (a musical instrument made from bamboo tubes) contest presented by angklung instructor and singer Ika as they got to strut their stuff for a chance to win a trip for two to Indonesia.

 

Unfortunately, unlike the previous two IW events, there wasn't any martial arts demonstrations this year. But any disappointment I may have initially felt was soon forgotten as my senses of sight and sound were seduced by vibrant costumes and exotic sounds of traditional and contemporary music all majestically emerging into a spectacular feast of performing arts with the beautiful backdrop of Tower Bridge.

 

The stage was bigger than the one they had in the first year, making it more accessible for photographers like myself to take shots from various angles. This was the second time I had photographed the event; the first time was when it made its debut in 2017. Sadly, I was only able to attend Day 1 this time around as I had already committed myself to Fighting Spirit Film Festival 2019 on the Sunday.  Nevertheless, it was a fun-packed day out that was enjoyed by young and old alike. It's still early days for IW, but I feel that if the organisers keep upping their game it will definitely keep going from strength to strength.

 

Below is a selection of photos I took during the Day 1 of the festival which I hope captures some of the energy and excitement of the live performances.