Indonesian community in Wellington and Palmerston North comprising the Wellington Indonesian Students’ Association (PPI Wellington), the Palmerston North Indonesian Students’ Association (PPI Palmerston North), the Indonesian Community Family in Wellington (Kamasi Wellington) and the Indonesian Christian Community (PM KIWI) joined together to take part in the second Southeast Asian Night Market put on by the Wellington City Council and the Asia:NZ Foundation on 20 March 2010
Facilitated by the Indonesian Embassy, the Indonesian community sold a variety of Indonesian food such as rendang curry, chicken satay, bakwan, springrolls, and cakes unique to Indonesia. Besides food, the Indonesian “team” also staged cultural performances such as the Balinese Kecak dance which was presented by the Palmerston North Indonesian Students’ Association, the Betawi ngarojeng dance presented by the Pelangi Nusantara dance group, and the saman dance presented by students of Al Azhar Jakarta Islamic Secondary School pupils who happened to be in Wellington on a homestay visit for ten days. Indonesia was also represented through the sale of carvings, trinkets and batik by Blue Rose, the Indonesian Muslim Community (UMI) and the Indonesian Christian Community (PM KIWI), and by a performance by Dimas Soeryoputro, a professional Indonesian jazz musician living in Wellington.
Like the first Southeast Asian Night Market which was held in 2008, the second night market attracted thousands of visitors who crowded around the stands of ASEAN countries such as Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and naturally Indonesia. The ASEAN countries represented showed off their various talents on a floating stage provided by the organising committee. The night market also included a barongsay, a models’ parade, a Javanese gamelan performance by the Padang Monchar gamelan ensemble of Victoria University, a shadow puppet performance by Dr. Joko Susilo of Otago University, kickboxing by the Wellington Kickboxing Club, tai chi by the Wellington School of Tai Chi, and kung fu by the Wellington Wing Tsun Kung Fu School.
Jennifer King, director of culture at Asia New Zealand Foundation stated that the Indonesian Embassy and community played a pivotal role in making the Southeast Asian Night Market such a success. Indonesians provided some wonderful performances which were very much appreciated by the crowds who attended the Night Market. It’s great to be able to see such talent shared with the wider community, Jennifer said.