Highlighting the deep-rooted Chinese culture in Indonesia, the Chinese “Peranakan” Festival is set to spark up the city of Batam, Riau Archipelago Province from 2nd to 4th November, 2012 held at the Kepri Mall.
The festival will feature some of the most unique displays of the “Peranakan” Culture which retains the values of ancient Chinese Wisdom, which through the ages haves merged with some of Indonesia’s own traditional arts and culture. Visitors will be pampered with a large variety of colorful programs including: a Peranakan Fashion Show which will display Cheong Sam Batik, Kebaya Encim, and many others; The history of Indonesian Chinese exhibition will be presented in three languages (Bahasa Indonesia, Chinese, and English); Antique Arts; and many others.
The event is fully supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy of the Republic of Indonesia, the Nusantara Art and Culture Communication Forum, and the Sam Po Kong Foundation from Semarang.
“Peranakan”-literally meaning: of mixed descent- is a term used for descendants of Chinese immigrants who came to the Indonesian islands since the 15th and 16th-century onwards. Although the term may be more familiarly associated with Chinese ethnics living along the Straits of Malaka (Malaysia, Singapore, and the eastern part of Sumatra) it is also applied to all Chinese descendants in the entire archipelago who have inter-married with local Indonesians and have become an inseparable part of the diverse traditional cultures in Indonesia.
The history of the Chinese in Indonesia notes that even before the arrival of Admiral Zheng He who came ashore in present-day Semarang in 1405 with some 27,000 sailors, contact between China and the Indonesian kingdoms had been ongoing for centuries. Chinese princesses married rulers in Indonesia. Of note was the marriage of Raja Srijaya Panggus of Bali with Kang Qin Wei. This marriage influenced the arts in Bali producing among others the Barong dance, the Baris dance and others.
However, after the arrival of Admiral Zheng He (or better known in Indonesia as Admiral Cheng Ho), Chinese influence became more widespread and more immigrants came in Indonesia. Today, large communities of Chinese can be found in Singkawang in West Kalimantan, on the islands of Bangka and Belitung, Palembang in South Sumatra, Medan, North Sumatra, in Jakarta, and along the north coast of Java.
Among the sub-ethnic Chinese clans in Indonesia are the Hakka, Hokien, Teochew, Hainan, and others.
Strong and sustained Chinese influence can be seen among others, in the fine woodcarving of Demak and Kudus, in Central Java, the fine gold embroidery of West Sumatra, lacquerware of Palembang, the ceramics of Singkawang, in the Batik cloths of Cirebon, Pekalongan and Lasem, as well as in daily popular food, such as tofu, noodles, beef balls, and many others.
The Peranakan Festival in Batam will give visitors an introduction into the large variety of Peranakan arts, culture, food and products that can be found in Indonesia. Do not miss this great opportunity.
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