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Populated Jakarta, Limited Concerts


Is there any classical music concert in Jakarta? This question might be still a big enigma for this metropolitan city, the biggest in Indonesia. With 8.56 million people, it joins the top-15 most populated cities in the world. It is said to be the center of political, economical, and socio-cultural activities in Indonesia.

Jakarta populated and polluted

But in Jakarta, there is only a handful classical music concerts produced every single month. So let’s do a little mathematics…

We suppose there are three concerts in Jakarta every single week as there are in February. Here, only public concerts not internal and community ones are included in the count. All sorts of concerts are included opera, vocal concerts, orchestral concerts, chamber music concerts, choir concerts, solo instrumental concerts and even musicals. So there are 12 concerts respectively, including a matinee.

Jakarta has only one big-capacity hall, namely Balai Sarbini, with 1300 seats and a so-so accoustics. All other venues are smaller ones, 800-seated Graha Bhakti Budaya in Taman Ismail Marzuki, 600-seated Usmar Ismail Hall, 430-seated Gedung Kesenian Jakarta, 340-seated Dutch culture center hall Erasmus Huis, and a 300-seated Goethe Haus which belongs to the German culture center. These are the venues which are oftenly used by the artists.

Balai Sarbini

Churches and hotel ballrooms are occasionally used, and eventhough those venues can hold up to 1000 seats, it is not that significant since concerts are held maybe only once a month if we are lucky enough to find one.

So, the capacity is averaged to 754. We assume that the concerts in the cultural venues have 70% attendance, so we suppose that each concerts has 527 people. As mentioned above we had 12 concerts a month which sums up to 6324 people, and added with one very successful concert in a hotel ballroom or a church, the counts increased to 7324 people watching concerts a month or 87888 people a year.

Compared to the citizen in Jakarta, it is only 1.02 percent of its citizen. And please keep in mind that during Jakarta Java Jazz Festival the audience exceed 60000 people in only 3 days.

In those countings, I left a couple of things unconsidered. Firstly, most of the concerts in Jakarta are done in Gedung Kesenian Jakarta, Erasmus Huis, and Goethe Haus which at its maxed capacity does not exceed 430 (compared to the 527 seats average).

Secondly, not every month can we meet an abundant concerts like this second month of the year. Here we suppose that concerts are done every other day. Sometimes we are extremely fortunate to find a concerts every week, because there are several times a year when we run across three or four weeks without any concerts at all.

Thirdly and the most important things, we do not count regulars, which comprised a decent number in the audience. These regulars might see 3 or more concerts a year.

At the end of the day that “1%” number shrinks. By the way, we only have about 5 orchestras in the city which performs once every 2 or 3 months, and no professional choir or opera company.

Still optimistic of the classical music life in Jakarta? Oh yes, I really do.

(note: professional means a full-time job in those company. Sorry for the bad English… just tried to write in other language)

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About mikebm (1239 Articles)
An arts journalist, a conductor, an educator, a young arts manager whose passion drove him to leave a multinational IT cooperation to study Arts Administration and Cultural Policy in London and went back to Indonesia to build the scene there.

7 Comments on Populated Jakarta, Limited Concerts

  1. Kayaknya di sebelah Graha Bhakti Budayanyah TIM lagi dibangun gedung baru. Mungkin itu gedung pertunjukkan juga (maklum, gw kurang info).. Semoga seni teater di Indonesia semakin maju (oops, salah blog ya? ;p)

  2. hmmmm
    i watch two out of three choir concert this month. two different choirs, two nights in a row, at the same venue.
    lumayan deh, buat cuci- cuci kuping.

    kayaknya banyaknya konser di jakarta itu seasonal yah. misalnya pertengahan tahun ini akan ada banyak choir yang akan pergi ke choir olympic di graz, austria. prediksi gw, juni akan banyak choir yang menggelar pre olympics concert sebelum mereka berangkat ke graz.

    about opera company… bukannya udah ada tuh, kalo ga salah namanya susvara2 gitu, yang music directornya catharina leimena. CMIIW

  3. ups, itu barusan komen dari gw. sorry, lupa login. heee ^_^

  4. rerere, memang ada tapi itu juga masih baru, so belum dikelola seperti manajemen di luar. Di susvara bisa dibilang yang pegang memang tante cathrine, karena memang dia yang paling mumpuni di bidang itu.

    Dan susvara saat ini basisnya masih berupa pendidikan, bukan pro seperti di eropa atau us yang kerja untuk operanya 5-6 days a week, dengan performance 4 sampai 5 kali seminggu.

    Wah rerere, kok kita gak ktemu,, aku yang jumat juga nonton lhow…

  5. Halo semuanya.. bisa minta informasi dimana bisa lihat schedule untuk konser2 orkestra di jakarta? terima kasih sebelumnya.

  6. @ iskandar silakan cek ke halaman konser info di blog ini. di sana saya post info2 konser di jakarta yang saya ketahui…. monggo dicek.

  7. Siti Kamalia // 31 Oktober 2010 pukul 8:32 am //

    sangat bermanfaat nih blog,thx

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