photo credit: PPIA Macquarie

As one of the most favourite abroad destination for Indonesian students, Australia is a second home for one of four young Indonesians who studies overseas. As the statistic speaks for itself, it allows Indonesian students in Australia, who generally known as PPIA (Perhimpunan Pelajar Indonesia Australia) to have a solid community. It’s been a tradition of many PPIAs that spread all around Australia Universities to hold annual gigs to promote Indonesia cultures, arts, language and to unite Indonesians who long for their home country.

Held as one of the biggest PPIA events, the students of Macquarie University proudly presented their showcase of the year, Soundquriang, The V (fifth) Act. The event which held at City Recital Hall Sydney highlighted by Indonesia’s most loved band Sheila On 7 and Indonesia sweetheart vocal group, HIVI! Along with the performance of The East and Friends, the MURI record breaker Michael Anthony and the exhibition of Balinese cultures, Tari Kecak.

Arriving early, AIYA’s Blog Editor, followed the PPIA Macquire team in getting ready for the grand night and getting to know the creative persons behind the epic night.

The team briefing just before the night take over

With a typical excitement of a live performance, the wait has started since 4 PM whilst the team had a briefing and getting ready for the night that started at 6 PM. At 4.45 PM when the foyer was open for ticket collecting and purchasing, the committee that consist of 30 students was splitting up working on their roles in assisting the event from helping the attendees, getting the venue ready to selling merchandise.

Soundquriang the V Act is the biggest event that ever been held for Macquire PPIA with as much as 1,200 seats sold and 100% its profit made will be donated to Rumah Faye, a sheltering home for victims of child trafficking based in Jakarta. The impressive upscale of Soundquriang in their fifth year didn’t happen overnight, admitted by Joshua as Marketing committee. It has been 6 months of hard working that involves many leadership skills which the team treasured most as their learning curves in the organisation. For him and the team, the biggest challenge was to be able to grasp everything by themselves and balancing their study and working in the organisation.

In spite of having 30 people in the team, Joshua admitted that the tasks and responsibilities were outnumbered them and in times the countless lobbying and decision-making process felt overwhelming. He also called fellow Indonesian students to join the team in the coming year to bring their skills and creativity to use. In answering what the team will bring to the table for next year, Joshua jokingly said, “we aren’t sure yet but I just want this to be over first,” in stating how much hard work have been put up in realising the event. “We hope that everything goes well and everyone can enjoy the show, that’s for now, we will see what we can do next year.” He continued in hope and confidence.

Tickets collection and purchasing took place at the foyer of City Recital Hall Sydney

The show was opened with a welcome speech by Fionita and Richard each with their role as Project Manager and Venue Coordinator. The East and Friends opened the first act with Indonesia’s national anthems such as Indonesia Pusaka, Dari Sabang Sampai Merauke, to folk songs such Sinagar Tulo and Kincir-Kincir.

The East and Friends opened the night accompanied with Indonesian dancers 

The event was attended by Indonesian Consul General for NSW, Bapak Heru Subolo, who used the opportunity to appeal everyone to register themselves for the general election which holds in the coming mid-April. He also addressed the importance of actualising ‘the modern Indonesia’ which allows Indonesians to be its people-to-people stakeholders in introducing Indonesia cultures, through music and arts in Australia.

Pak Heru giving his speech along with the event’s host, Darian

The night highlight began on the second act, the talented Michael Anthony Kwok, who amazed the audience with his talent despite his misfortune. Michael broke MURI record as the youngest visually-impaired and autistic pianist in Indonesia. The 15 years old learned music (piano) autodidact since three years of age and picking up only by listening. His talent was discovered by surprise when the Kwok family found Michael played an ice cream commercial jingle that he heard and ever since he been memorising hundreds of songs. Not only had he performed in the Netherland, but Michael also had his solo piano recital at the Sydney Opera House.

The extraordinary Michael Anthony who amused the audience with his music

Cruising with the night, one of the main guests, HIVI! presented the third act with their hits songs such Remaja, Pelangi, Kereta Kencan with many enthusiasts. HIVI! through their love songs has turned the recital hall into a warm and loving atmosphere with the audience sang and dance along with them. HIVI! took the night to express their gratitude to be able to perform out of the country and hope to entertain the Indonesia and Australia public in the near future through their work.

HIVI! spreading love through their songs 

Before jumping to the heat of the night, the fourth act was a warm-up to the most waited guest. Exhibition of a contemporary interpretation of Tari Kecak was presented by students who performed Tari Kecak for the first time with the assistance of Balinese Tari Kecak community in Sydney.

Showcase of Indonesian cultures through Tari Kecak

Despite a minor sound difficulty, the night was carried well by the host Darian who used the opportunity to warm up the audience before meeting the night’ spotlight. Sheila On 7’s 22 years of existence in Indonesia music industry was not a myth as the crowd went wild with their appearance. The performance that seems like a solo concert brought the audience to their feet whilst singing along through the night. Duta expressed his gratitude for the chance to entertain Sydney fans for the first time in their music journey.

Duta and the band rock the nights with their hits

An encore was granted to close the intimate night.

The night through a lense, photo credit: Disty

Special thanks for the hospitality and the open hand of PPIA Macquarie to AIYA. 

If you have any event that bridging both Australia-Indonesia you’d like us to cover, feel free to drop us an email at [email protected]