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Jakarta Post

Festival aims to revive Cirebon'€™s faded glory

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

  /   Sun, November 30, 2014   /  10:47 am

The West Java provincial government, the Cirebon administration and the Kanoman and Kasepuhan sultanates are planning the three-day Gotrasawala festival to promote Cirebon, from Dec.3 to 5.

Franki Raden, an ethnomusicology professor and Gotrasawala creative director, said that the festival aimed to restore West Java'€™s position in global culture and history.

Gotrasawala refers to the '€œglobal gathering'€ initiated in Cirebon by Prince Wangsakerta in the 17th century,'€ Franki said. '€œCirebon was not only famous [then] as a busy ancient maritime trade port, but also as a place where international scholars came and shared knowledge.'€

The festival'€™s artistic performances will focus on classical, contemporary and emerging trends in dance, music and theater, while exhibitions will include local artisans, such as batik makers and traditional Javanese glass painters.

Meanwhile, the Kacirebonan Palace and the Benda Kuno archaeological museum at the Kasepuhan Palace will host exhibits of royal weaponry, heirlooms, ancient manuscripts and old photographs; and a conference at the Kasepuhan sultanate will discuss West Javanese history and music with historian Taufik Abdullah and Mikihiro Moriyama, Laurie Margot and Margaret Bradley, who are professors of literature, contemporary dance and contemporary music, respectively.

 '€œThe festival is about people-to-people relationships '€” a people'€™s gathering,'€ Franki said.

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