The Indonesian Embassy in Baku presented the First Indonesian Cultural Festival for 3 days continuously from 19th to 20th November at the Mugham Center of Baku. The Festival displayed the exotic tradition and cultural diversity of this Southeast Asian nation to curious Bakuvians. The cultural show in Baku is part of cultural series supported by the Indonesian government worldwide so as to promote export of Indonesian tourism, textiles, jewelry, spices, inter alia.
Azerbaijan was specifically chosen to be one of the destinations for Indonesian culture promotion because of the special close relationship between the two countries, which has been attentively nurtured since 1992. Indonesia has always been supporting Azerbaijani position in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, which is highly appreciated by Azerbaijan. The ties also come from Islamic common culture between the two; both nations are members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and Non-aligned movement. Despite geographical distance, both see each other as best friends, and that brotherhood-like friendship was fully demonstrated through the Indonesian cultural festival.
The festival was professionally organized with a carefully-trained group of volunteer young Azerbaijani students working side-by-side with friendly and energetic representatives from Indonesian Embassy. At the entrance was the photo exhibition of Indonesian glamorous nature and culture.
There was also a section of 3D photo background, where visitors could take pictures with the beautiful sunset view of Indonesia as if they were visiting Indonesia.
Indonesian tea, species, and snacks were also served to Baku citizens.
Young people moved around hastily, tried on the traditional customs of Indonesia, took a lot of pictures and asked the representatives from the Embassy many questions.
However, what made the cultural festival so extraordinary are the performances of Indonesian dance and music. The audience was completely full. Everyone was joyful and excited, giving big applauses for the performances. And guess what? On the stage were Azerbaijani performers!!! This must be the first time in Baku that cultural event of a foreign country was, for the most part, performed by local citizens. If one just looked at how those people danced without seeing the Azerbaijani faces on the stage, he or she would never be able to tell that the performers were not native Indonesians. Such great creativity of the Indonesian Embassy! On one hand the audience was positively surprised and attracted to the performances made by their own citizens, on the other hand, it pushed cultural exchanges to climax –Azerbaijani citizens could understand and perform Indonesian culture just like native Indonesians. By letting the young people of Azerbaijan perform Indonesian culture, the Embassy had successfully planted the seeds of love and passion for Indonesia among them.
Probably creativity and friendliness are deeply embedded in the blood of Indonesian nation. At the end of the cultural festival, Mr. Ambassador came on stage and encouraged everyone to join the dance, which he himself, together with his wife, participated enthusiastically. From the support and enthusiasm of the audience, it is possible to see that everyone was surprised by the outgoing-ness of Mr. Ambassador.
Mr. Ambassador mingled into the crowd, danced with everyone, and later took pictures with any who was interested; he even remembered and lauded the name of each and every performer, he said thanks to them in front of the large audience. Though this is in complete contrast with the common serious style of Diplomats; it is how it should be.
The festival ended successfully in the big applauses of the audience. Representatives from the Embassy promised to host more similar cultural events in Baku. Therefore, watch out their facebook and participate in future events. There are also lots of opportunities for gifts. For example, in today’s event, those with the tickets (free of charge) and student cards can get a free 16-GB USB.
Indonesian cultural festival is one of many exciting cultural events taking place in Baku. 2016 is declared to be the Year of Multiculturalism in Azerbaijan. The people of Azerbaijan has been working hard so that Azerbaijan can grow herself into not only the international trading hub, but also an international cultural hub. Good luck Azerbaijan!
source : Eurasiadiary.com