Jakarta Tourism and Culture Department is holding the Jakarta Keroncong Festival on August 20-21, which is staged at the building of Nyi Geng Serang, South Jakarta. It aims to preserve Betawi culture, especially for keroncong music.
Head of Management and Destination Attraction Division for Jakarta Tourism and Culture Department, Ida Subaedah said Jakarta Keroncong Festival is one of ways to preserve keroncong music in Jakarta. “Keroncong music must keep being preserved,” she stated, at Nyi Ageng Serang building, South Jakarta, Tuesday (8/20).
Despite it is the first time, such event is able to attract many participants. There are at least 85 participants and 12 groups. As for the peak of the event and winner announcement will be centered at Jakarta Theatre Building, Taman Ismail Marzuki (TIM), which falls on August 24.
All keroncong groups in Jakarta are participating in the event. It could also develop keroncong music in Jakarta, because the peak of the event will be combined with the orchestra by Jakarta Philharmonic Orchestra. Total prize is reaching Rp 60 million,” she expressed.
Chairman of Coordination Board for Keroncong Music Organization, Sumaryo disclosed Jakarta has at least 59 keroncong groups. Yet only 9-10 out of them are still active, because several musicians have passed away and there is no heir. “9-10 groups are still active now,” told Subaedah.
At this time, he is putting in effort for keroncong to be taught at schools as one of extracurricular activities, so it could be preserved. “We’re putting in effort to make kerenconcong be taught at school. Cipeteselatan Elementary School has done so. Thus, children would like the music since early age,” he told.
Chairman of Keroncong group of Pangudi Luhur Senior High School (Kapel), Iffan explained keroncong has become one of the school`s extracurricular activities since last year. The group has participated in a number of competitions. “We have also performed at Parliament Building,” informed Iffan.
He admitted that he feels attracted to keroncong due to its one of a kind arrangement. Even though it is quite difficult, you will master it if you persevere. “The music is addictive once you like it. You could even fuse any genre of music you can think of with keroncong,” he finished.