However, dreams can happen when you are awake, filling people’s hearts with wonders and delights as seen through the performance by Teater Tetas theater troupe during its European tour.
Founded in September 1978 by its artistic director, the late Ags Arya Dipayana, the group is a familiar theater group in the country, especially in Bulungan Youth Center in South Jakarta. Since then, it has grown and developed, with 646 members to date.
Teater Tetas has also contributed to the shaping of contemporary theater in the country through its performances, which were often inspired by the Mahabharata epic.
The Europe tour they were rolling from late May to early June, they presented the play Mimpi (Dream), which first debuted in December last year.
The tour happened with the cooperation, which was built between the theater group’s late leader and Werner Schulze — a composer, scientist and professor at the International Center for Harmonics of the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, Austria.
The play was also dedicated to the late Arya Dipayana.
The group set off from Jakarta to make their dreams come true.
They first arrived in Selianitika, Greece, where they were staying for six days and performing at Theater Hellenikon Idyllion, Theater Apollon and Messolongi.
Hopping on a cruise and crossing the Venetian water, they went straight to Gmund, Austria. Two performances and workshops were held in Gmund and Wiener Neustadt, Austria before moving to Hungary.
First place to visit was Pecs, where another performance and workshop were held in this small city before the troupe ended the trip in Budapest.
I took a chance to see them live in Hungary, where they received applause from the audience.
The students from the high school of arts in Pecs where Teater Tetas was showing the play were very pleased to join and be involved in the workshop.
In Budapest, the play became the highlight to close the Congress of Symmetry: Art and Science, where Professor Werner, who was also a guest professor at the Indonesia Art Institute in Yogyakarta and is author of the fable Burung Cendrawasih, was a contributor.
This play was solely sponsored by Professor Werner, who has a very big interest in Indonesia and had been the country for many times.
Werner said that he actually did not want to use the word “perform”, which he finds very structured and may also mean one could not make any mistake in the performance.
“It is not what Mimpi is all about. Mimpi is a mix of chaos — be empty to be full,” he said in the workshop.
“Mimpi makes you dance without music. Foreign language is not an obstacle; it is a challenge. You only need to understand the expression of the people on the stage.
“Mimpi lets public to interpret what they see. Mimpi combines all aspects in theater which are dance, music, pantomime, even math, science and philosophy.”
The story itself centers on a blind man, a priest, white feathers, bamboo bars and an egg as symbols of hope and a new beginning, making us think about issues that move people as human beings — love and sorrow, death and birth, comfort and happiness as well as hope.
The play guided the audience to look back for the trace of what we had left behind.
The music, which originates from several cultures such as Indonesia, Iran and some parts in Europe, contributes to sharpening contrasts and generating moments of surprise.
Mimpi is neither a show nor entertainment. Mimpi tells a story without telling a story.