Komunitas Seni Ruang Ketiga Presents “Urban Culture”

by Rivaldi Ihsan, Ethnomusicologist and Lecturer in Music.

On Saturday, February 15, 2020, an event themed GG Movement was held at Kedai Apresiasi Seni or Thekopikepress. Located at Jalan Tiban III, Patam Lestari, Sekupang Batam. That afternoon the heat was very hot. However, the committee must immediately set up the performance stage with all the equipment. They arrived at 16.00 pm, then they looked busy preparing the stage set of the show that will be held tonight in the yard Thekopikepress.

As the night approached, at 19.00 pm, the young men and women of Batam City began to arrive wearing their best looks. Not forgetting to wear a variety of perfume scent really feels once when they missed this night. It’s also Sunday night when young millennials come with their partners. However, there are also those who come in groups with male or female friends. They walked slowly towards Thekopikepress looking for a seating position, while ordering food or drinks while enjoying tonight’s event movement.

At exactly 20.00 wib the event was opened by an MC. He also told us about the concept of the GG Movement event which presents live music performances from several local Batam artists. The first show started with the Titik Temu music group who performed some of today’s hits with acoustic music arrangements. Then, followed by Guitar Coaching Clinic with KS Aji and friends of Batam Guitar Family.

Next, game’s from the GG Movement. After the game’s there was a performance from the Komunitas Seni Ruang Ketiga (Third Space Art Community, KSRK). This community gave a different presentation on this night. The presentation was a contemporary music and dance collaboration entitled Urban Culture.

An MC began reading the synopsis of the work entitled Urban Culture. Here is the synopsis; A young man from West Kalimantan, Dayak tribe migrated to Batam City to study at one of the private universities in the Western music program. Even though his background is a traditional Kalimantan sape musician. He also experienced various kinds of conflicts between being a traditional musician and a Western musician.

The KSRK performance art work is divided into three parts; the first part is the journey of a Dayak youth from West Kalimantan to Batam City. In this first part, the music illustration begins with the sound of a bird played by a musician by blowing, then accompanied by a karinding attached to the mouth of a percussionist. He also plays one, two, three and four beats alternately. It seemed like the musicians wanted to create a natural atmosphere of the interior of the Kalimantan forest. Then, a dancer sat cross-legged in front of the two musicians, in the shape of a triangle. It was as if he was meditating while moving his right hand to the left, while his feet slowly stepped towards the front of the performance stage. Overall, the first part describes the journey of the Dayak youth to Batam City.

In the second part, the performance tells the story of Dayak youth in the process of bargaining with themselves. The life of the people of Batam City is identical with Malay culture, Urban culture and other ethnic cultures. In this section, the melody of the sape was very nuanced Dayak music, plus the accompaniment of eight-beat percussion beats, really made the audience tonight gathered crowded in front of the performance stage.

In the third section, the performance tells the story of the conflict within the Dayak youth during his stay in Batam City. At first he felt resentful, restless, disappointed, angry with the social life in Batam City, which did not match the life in his hometown. However, on the one hand, he feels happy, contented, lulled by the atmosphere of Malay culture, and the urban culture of Batam City.

The music in this section is very fast-paced. This can be seen in the musician playing the djimbe with a fast beat, followed by the improvised strings of the sape, while the dancer’s movement creates a contemporary movement. This shows the harshness of urban culture.

When viewed from the enthusiasm of the audience for the third space art community performance, it was very appreciative. This can be seen from the crowd of spectators who came to the front of the performance stage. They were curious about the performance presented by KSRK, because it is very rare for music and dance performances to be performed in the social public spaces of Batam City.

In addition, the audience or art lovers of Batam City also have an interest in new things in the world of performing arts today. This event is also influenced by local culture and global culture, so that the open-mindedness of Batam Urban community to accept new spaces or third spaces. This message is conveyed to the people of Batam Urban, that there are still many other third spaces in the social life of Batam City.

KSRK’s performance emphasizes the concept of the work in the synopsis read by the MC above. They aim to provide a new discourse for the audience present that night, so that the audience does not experience curiosity even though they still have curiosity too. However, it was one of the ways KSRK introduced the multidisciplinary art of contemporary music and dance to the people of Urban Batam.


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