Press

Local Indonesian dance group featured on live television

Local Indonesian dance group featured on live television

Dishes and Dances

by Joseph Myers on March 15, 2019

St. Thomas Aquinas parish in Point Breeze will host an Indonesian Food Festival on March 23rd

While roughly 10,000 miles separate Jakarta and her Montgomery County residence, Mutia Riasinta Penyami Storms, known by the nickname “Sinta,” never finds herself far from her Indonesian roots. She has been recognized as a central figure in the Indonesian cultural community since she founded Modero & Company, an Indonesian dance company, in 2011. On March 23, from 10 a.m to 3 p.m., she will oversee the Indonesian Food Festival at Saint Thomas Aquinas Church, 18th and Morris streets. Read more here

Bartol Teaching Artist Spotlight Sinta Penyami Storms

Didik in Philadelphia by Toni Shapiro-Phim

March 10: Lengger Banyumas master class at Headlong Dance Studio

Thirty women and girls (and one man) of Indonesian heritage – plus one man who showed up by accident, thinking this was the day of Didik’s performance – filled the dance studio, hanging on Didik’s every movement and word. Here was a famous star from their homeland (or their parents’ homeland), offering them a lesson in a form of dance which none had performed before. (One participant said it was like seeing a favorite TV character come to life.) This group of girls and women were, for the most part, members of Modero Traditional and Fusion Indonesian Dance Company. Founded by Sinta Penyami Storms in 2011, Modero is a central feature of Philadelphia’s Indonesian community events. A 70-year-old grandmother and her 13-year old granddaughter, both Modero members, were among Didik’s students. Sinta requested and made arrangements for this workshop so that Modero dancers could “learn directly from and be molded into position by a master artist.” She also wanted them to see, in person, an Indonesian dance performance of such high caliber.

A bit flirtatious and suggestive, Lengger is popular with people of all socioeconomic classes, though religious fundamentalists have spoken out against it, noting its overt sensuality. Didik continues the historic cross-gender representation in Lengger in this piece , Lengger Banyumas,which he choreographed. He demonstrated a basic hand gesture, along with ways to manipulate the long scarf hanging from his neck, and the syncopated bounces of the torso, for performance as a female. Elements of the posture were difficult for the dancers: Didik moved from student-to-student, gently pushing the small of the back to encourage an arch, touching the leg or foot to emphasize a turn-out or lifting the arms so they were held at shoulder height. On Facebook, participants shared how sore they were the next day. And how grateful. Read the full article here…