TheJakartaPost

Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Monica Akihary: Singing the past to life

  • Sara Veal

    Contributor

Jakarta   /   Sat, September 12 2009   /  01:49 pm

Twenty years ago, Monica Akihary visited Indonesia for the first time, with high-school sweetheart Neils Brouwer, to study sculpture and batik. The trip inspired her to become a professional singer. Today she is still making beautiful music with Brouwer in world jazz band Boi Akih, drawing on her Moluccan roots, adding a contemporary twist to old folk tales. "I was at Asri, in Yogya; I came to study there for a year," says Akihary, an ageless beauty with wild curls. "Our house was across from a school that taught traditional gamelan music of Java. We also traveled around. When I came back, I was like, oh, these things are so beautiful, and it really inspired us for the rest of our whole lives." Akihary and guitarist Brouwer are the center of Netherlands-based Boi Akih ("Princess Akih" in the language of Haruku Island), which plays in a range of set ups, from duo to si...