JEDDAH: Performances using traditional musical instruments hit the right note with visitors to an Indonesian and Hijazi cultural event held recently in Jeddah.
The angklung, an Indonesian instrument made from bamboo, and the Arabian oud featured prominently at the event which took place in the historic Al-Balad area of the city.
Organized by Zawiya 97 in collaboration with the Jeddah Historic District Program and the Angklung Ensemble from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology’s arts office, the gathering was attended by around 300 guests including KAUST students and staff, members of the Indonesian community, and leading Saudi figures.
A musical rendition based around the angklung was performed by an Andika Berbawa-led band of students, teachers, and university staff from KAUST’s arts department.
Ahmed Angawi, chief executive officer of Zawiya 97, told Arab News: “Usually our celebrations focus on the traditions and culture of this region through arts, crafts, and architecture design but this event is about music in collaboration with KAUST and Jeddah Historic District Program.
“Apart from our role to revive the community in Al-Balad, we are celebrating the culture of Indonesia through its arts, tradition, food, and music, which highlights the beautiful connection between Indonesia and the Hijaz area,” he said.
He noted that the event had been staged to offer Indonesian music fused with Hijazi songs and Indonesian cuisine in celebration of a cultural convergence that extended through the ages.
Indonesian students showcased traditional clothing and crafts from various regions, and guests were invited to sample popular southeast Asian dishes such as selat Solo, mie goreng, sayur lodeh with quail eggs, and chicken satay.
Solkem N’Gangbet, head of KAUST’s office of the arts, said: “Al-Balad, Hijaz, and Indonesia are a natural combination. So, we decided, with Zawiya 97, to come up with music and culinary art to honor this connection through ages.”
She pointed out that the event had been designed to draw links between the past, present, and future.
The ceremony concluded with a local band performing Hijazi music.