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Papua Cultural Night at the Indonesian Embassy The Hague

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DIPLOMAT MAGAZINE “For diplomats, by diplomats” Reaching out the world from the European Union First diplomatic publication based in The Netherlands. Founded by members of the diplomatic corps on June 19th, 2013. "Diplomat Magazine is inspiring diplomats, civil servants and academics to contribute to a free flow of ideas through an extremely rich diplomatic life, full of exclusive events and cultural exchanges, as well as by exposing profound ideas and political debates in our printed and online editions." Dr. Mayelinne De Lara, Publisher

Bird of Paradise

By Roy Lie Atjam

On Monday, May 6, 2024, the Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia, H.E. Mr. Mayerfas, hosted a “Papua Cultural Night” featuring traditional dances and music from Papua. The performance was presented by Hgateri Akustik, a Papuan cultural group consisting of young Papuans from the Wonti ethnic group in Waropen, Papua.

The group, currently on tour in Europe, paid a courtesy call to Ambassador Mayerfas and performed at the auditorium of the Indonesian Embassy in The Hague. The event was well-attended, and the artists, dressed in colorful attire, presented a dazzling show of dances, music, and songs in both the Indonesian language and the Papuan vernacular. Mr. Manuel, a seasoned singer, captivated the audience with his celestial voice. The audience also had the opportunity to participate by joining in the dancing.

Hgateri Akustik, Papua Cultural Group.

Overall, it was a wonderful evening of entertainment and cultural celebration.

Hgateri Akustik from Indonesia to the Netherlands: a Showcase of Papuan Culture. Eighteen talented young Papuans fused in “Hgateri”  toured the Netherlands from 25 April to 8 May 2024 for a roadshow of Papuan culture. The group leader, Mr Andy Nussy, explains, “our mission is to introduce and promote the tradition of the Wonti tribe to the World”. In their performances, Hgateri shows the traditional values and wisdom of the Wonti etnic group, which include living in harmony with nature, protection of Cendrawasih (Bird of Paradise), the spirit of togetherness and gratefulness. The Wonti tribe, native to Waropen Regency, is one of more than 255 ethic groups in Papua, Indonesia.

Papua Hgateri Akustik / Indonesia Embassy The Hague.

During their stay in the Netherlands, Hgateri has staged in Steyl, Maastricht, Olst and The Hague. The group amazed the public during the “Papuan Heritage Cultural Day” (“Papoea-Erfgoed Culturele Dag”) at Missiemuseum, Steyl, on 27 April 2024. The workshop, followed by a stunning performance of traditional music and the Cendrawasih dance, were part of the ongoing “Birds of God” (“Vogels van God”) exhibition, a special showcase about Cendrawasih at Missiemuseum that will remain until 1 September 2024.

On 28 April 2024, the gifted young Papuans collaborated with the Indonesian Students Association in Maastricht to tone up “Nusantara Night”, a presentation of Indonesian cultural richness which included display of Indonesian traditional woven fabrics, exhibition of Pencak Silat – traditional martial art, a mini concert of Sasando – traditional musical instrument made of palm leaves from Rote Island, and more Papuan traditional music and Tari Perang (War Dance).

Hgateri Akustik, Papua.

After a week enjoying the warm Dutch hospitality, on 4 April 2024, the group engaged with the locals of Olst and surroundings at the “Bird of Paradise: Papuan Cultural Night”

(“Bird of Paradise: Papoea Culturele Avond”) at the Municipal Theater of Olst that went on from after dinner time until well past midnight.

Hgateri took part in “OUR COUNTRY: The Freedom Show” (“ONS LAND: De Vrijheidshow”) organized by the Indisch Herinneringscentrum (IHC) at the Sofiahof Museum in The Hague on 5 may 2024. The public was so thrilled with Tifa dance and Yospan dance that the group was requested to come back to the stage for one extra Sajojo dance after the show had –supposedly– come to an end. The rising Papuan youngsters made their final act in the Netherlands before a group of Friends of Indonesia on 6 May 2024 at the Indonesian Embassy in The Hague. There, Hgateri was able to quench the crowd’s yearning of Indonesia and revive their beautiful memories of Archipelago.

Hgateri is part of the Papua Youth Creative Hub (PYCH), a collaborative space for Papuan youth. PYCH focuses on 6 main programs: entrepreneurs, education and health, social and culture, Creative Industry, Farming and Fisheries, and Digital Innovation. PYCH strives to give economic value to the natural resources of Papua and encourage entrepreneurial movement in Papua through the youth.

The evening concluded with a banquet. The Papua Cultural Night, all left the Indonesian Embassy auditorium The Hague in high spirits.

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