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Jakarta Post

Gen-Z ‘dalang’ loves tradition, embraces modernity

  • The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, August 11 2020   /  01:00 am
Gibran Nikolau Papadimitriou plays with one of his 'wayang kulit' collection at The Jakarta Post's studio in January.(JP/Wienda Parwitasari)

Gibran Nicholau Papadimitriou, 18, arrived at The Jakarta Post’s studio earlier this year, carrying some of his collection of wayang kulit (leather puppets) and wayang golek (three-dimensional wooden puppets). Dressed in dalang (puppeteer) attire, comprising loose lurik shirt, kain jarik (traditional Javanese cloth) and blangkon (traditional Javanese hat), Gibran then sat crossed-legged on the floor. When the camera rolled, Gibran moved his wayang and spoke a dialogue in Javanese. There was no stage lighting to dim nor a gamelan set, but his very brief performance brought life to the Post’s studio. Gibran, who is also known as Ki Kawipujo Permadi, is a young dalang. Last year he performed Nakula Sadewa Murca at the Wayang Museum in West Jakarta to celebrate National Wayang Day. The Gen-Z dalang seems to embrace Indonesian cultural heritage both on and off stage. O...