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Solo Batik Carnival 2019 shines spotlight on Southeast Asian culture

Ganug Nugroho Adi

The Jakarta Post

Surakarta, Central Java  /  Mon, July 29, 2019  /  11:07 am
  • Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo participates in the carnival with a costume from Timor Leste.

    Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo participates in the carnival with a costume from Timor Leste. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo participates in the carnival with a costume from Timor Leste.

  • A participant shows off her Thai costume at the Solo Batik Carnival.

    A participant shows off her Thai costume at the Solo Batik Carnival. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    A participant shows off her Thai costume at the Solo Batik Carnival.

  • Participants present cultural performances at the Solo Batik Carnival.

    Participants present cultural performances at the Solo Batik Carnival. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    Participants present cultural performances at the Solo Batik Carnival.

  • A fashion show of traditional costumes is held during the Solo Batik Carnival.

    A fashion show of traditional costumes is held during the Solo Batik Carnival. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    A fashion show of traditional costumes is held during the Solo Batik Carnival.

  • A Singaporean delegate presents the Merlion batik costume.

    A Singaporean delegate presents the Merlion batik costume. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    A Singaporean delegate presents the Merlion batik costume.

  • A costume of the Solo princess design.

    A costume of the Solo princess design. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    A costume of the Solo princess design.

  • Malaysian delegates showcase their costumes in the Bhayangkara area of the Solo Batik Carnival on Saturday.

    Malaysian delegates showcase their costumes in the Bhayangkara area of the Solo Batik Carnival on Saturday. OF JP/Ganug Nugroho Adi

    Malaysian delegates showcase their costumes in the Bhayangkara area of the Solo Batik Carnival on Saturday.

OF

Dozens of people donning traditional outfits from Southeast Asian countries filled the streets of Surakarta in Central Java – a city also known as Solo – during the Solo Batik Carnival (SBC) 2019 on Saturday.

Unlike the past events, this year's carnival attempted to bring something new to the table with the theme “Suvarna Bhumi: The Golden of ASEAN”.

Delegations from 11 Southeast Asian countries, namely Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Brunei Darussalam, Singapore, Myanmar, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and Timor Leste, showcased traditional outfits from their countries and kicked off the event with various artistic performances.

The chairman of the Solo Batik Carnival foundation, Susanto, expressed hope that the event would attract international tourists to Indonesia.

"This year's theme, Suvarna Bhumi: The Golden of ASEAN, means the golden countries. I hope that tourists from Southeast Asian countries will be interested in visiting our country for this festival," Susanto told The Jakarta Post on Saturday.

Some of the outfits have unique features based on national mascots. For example, the costumes of Thailand's delegates come with a white elephant's head ornament, while the Singaporean ones come with the country's half-lion half-fish icon, the Merlion.

Read also: Solo Batik Carnival highlights diversity, creativity

Aside from the delegates of the Southeast Asian countries, hundreds of people of local carnival communities, such as Semarang Pesona, Grobogan, and Samarinda, participated in the festival. They walked 5 kilometers from the Sriwedari Stadion to the Town Hall in a parade.

"The public has been looking forward to this event. I always support this kind of event, seeing that it's a way to promote our culture and tourism," Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo said on Saturday.

Ganjar, who attended the event himself, was wearing a predominantly red traditional outfit from Timor Leste. The governor wore a feather crown to complete his outfit.

Surakarta Deputy Governor Achmad Purnomo said in the past the annual carnival would only revolve around a local cultural theme. However, in an attempt to attract more foreign tourists, the committee decided to incorporate Southeast Asia cultures this year.

"Hopefully, Solo can achieve global prominence through this event," Achmad said. (dpk/asw)

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