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Kenyan couple's wedding showcases Indonesian culture

Jessicha Valentina
Jessicha Valentina

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Fri, November 18, 2016  /  03:27 pm
Kenyan couple's wedding showcases Indonesian culture

Joshua Mugo and his wife celebrate their wedding with a touch of Indonesian culture on Sunday. (Indonesian Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya/File)

Kenyan Joshua Mugo and his new wife chose to combine Kenyan and Indonesian cultures as the theme for their recent wedding. Held on Sunday in a school yard in Nairobi, the unique wedding reception opened with gending (gamelan melodies) and ended with Kenyan dance.

Following Javanese tradition, the couple dressed in black and gold jarik (batik skirts) and slowly entered the wedding area to a melody of “Gending Lancaran Kebo Giro”.

For entertainment, the wedding hosted an angklung performance from the wives of employees at the Tourism Ministry, dubbed Dharma Wanita, from the Indonesian Embassy in Nairobi. The group performed together with a Nairobi-based choir, playing Kenyan songs “Jambo Bwana” and “Malaika”.

(Read also: 40 Days in Europe angklung group performs in London)

Joshua Mugo conducts an angklung performance during his wedding in Nairobi.(Indonesian Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya/File)

As mentioned on the ministry's official website, the attendees looked excited as they watched the performance. “This is the first time for Kenyans to see Indonesian culture,” said Mugo, who also acted as the conductor for the performance.

Mugo ordered 150 angklung from Bandung, West Java, for wedding souvenirs.

Interestingly, the couple have never visited the archipelago. Mugo first learned about Indonesian culture while studying music at a leading private university in Kenya, which led him to meet a professor from Malang, East Java. Since then, the groom has had a strong interest in Indonesian culture.

Indonesian Ambassador to Kenya Soehardjono Sastromihardjo said the embassy would keep promoting Indonesian culture. “This wedding that combines Indonesian and Kenyan cultures is one of our efforts to promote Indonesia to Kenyan citizens,” he said. (kes)

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