Indonesian celebration sweeps campus

The Indonesian festival in full swing.
Image: Ollie BurtonThe Indonesian festival in full swing. Image: Ollie Burton

This past Thursday, the university quad bore witness to the fourth annual Discover Indonesia campaign exhibition, run by a collaboration of Indonesian Society students from both Newcastle and Northumbria.

Neysa, co-director of the joint society efforts and a second year Interior Architecture student from Northumbria University, said that the ultimate goal was to “show the international community about the beauty and culture of Indonesia.” As the world’s largest archipelago made up of more than 17000 discrete islands, the country boasts a wealth of beautiful natural scenery and a rich collection of distinct cultural practices, including styles of cooking associated with individual islands. Neysa estimated that there were approximately 200 Indonesian students in the area, from undergraduate through to PhD level, many of whom are residing in the UK on full academic scholarships.

A variety of stalls were available for passers-by to engage with, including a small market selling a range of Indonesian foods, and another exhibiting a traditional cracker-eating game, known as ‘lomba kerupuk’, wherein a cracker is suspended above your head on a string and you must attempt to consume it without using your hands. Students were also encouraged to try and pin on a map where they thought Indonesia was geographically located (often to very limited success). Additionally, a small band of students played Indonesian street music for passers-by.

The event is run by two crews of 35 students from Newcastle and Northumbria, and culminated in a traditional performance on Sunday night at Domain, in Northumbria students’ union.

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