Maksum Nur Fauzan
Srawung Seni Candi – an annual festival welcoming the New Year at the lesser known Sukuh temple complex – has taken place for the 14th time. The event usually begins on Dec. 31 and ends the next day to welcome the new year.
At the latest year-end event, local artists such as Iik Suryani and Suprapto Suryodarmo from Karanganyar; Otniel Tasman and Ketoprak Ngampung from Surakarta and the Adipala Workshop from Klaten, all from Central Java; La-Here from Makassar, South Sulawesi, Wukir Suryadi and Bimo Wiwohatmo from Yogyakarta and Bathara Saverigade Dewantor from Jakarta were among the attendees. International artists including Claire Loussouarn from France, Tetsuro Koyano from Japan and Sha Sha Higby from Canada also attended the event.
Srawung Seni Candi takes place at the Sukuh temple complex in Karanganyar, built during the era of the Majapahit kingdom. The idea to hold the year-end annual event came from the Lemah Putih arts center in cooperation with the Central Java Cultural Heritage Preservation Body, Karanganyar Tourism Agency, Karanganyar Environment Agency, Indonesian Yoga Instructor Association and villagers from Berjo Ngargoyoso in Karanganyar.
The event kicked off by distributing plants, followed by yoga session in the afternoon and tirakatan (night vigil) later on.
On the first day of 2018, the attendees began the day at 9 a.m. by praying at the temple, followed by participating in a parade.
Visitors then sat on mattresses and watched the performances at the Garuda Stage, located next to the temple complex. The performances had been moved to the Garuda Stage to avoid further damage to the ancient temple because of the vibrations caused by the sound system.
The organizers hope that the year-end annual event will boost tourism in the area and help preserve the heritage site. [yan]