Indonesian Dance Festival 2016

Pre Opening

The Pre-Opening adopts the ritual concept of “selamatan” (a social function where the host asks for blessings before starting something), which is often applied in daily social practices. In the context of many local traditions in Indonesia, art stems from the relation between man and nature. Jakarta, which is often described as a concrete jungle, apparently still has green spaces in its peripheries. It is in this urban jungle that two performances, by Jefriandi Usman and Abdullah Wong respectively, will be held as a kind of “selamatan”, so the festival will run smoothly.


After initiating with IDF 2014: EXPAND, this year’s IDF: Tubuh Sonik (Sonic Body) will present another new work by an Indonesian artist. This time it is an international collaboration between Melati Suryodarmoknown as a performance artist—with music composer Naoki Iwata aka SKANK. Presenting a new piece, Tomorrow as Purposed, is always a risky endeavor. But this time, IDF tries our best to make time and be present in the artists’ creative process, through intensive discussions and rehearsal visits. One of IDF 2016’s curators, Seno Joko Suyono, is even involved as the dramaturge, because the piece goes back to the Shakespeare’s classic, Macbeth.

Main Performances

The main performances are full-length pieces from artists/choreographers with a wide spectrum of ages and experiences. This spectrum is also represented by the variety of approaches and production modes. A collaboration between man and robot in Anthony Hamilton’s and Alisdair Macindoe’s work; collaboration between an individual and a collective in Punkasila and Fitri Setyaningsih’s work; a follow-up to an international co-production between Darlane Litaay-Tian Rotteveel; or a collaborative adaptation work by Park Je Chun with four Indonesian dancers and three Korean dancers. Aguibo Bougobali Sanou is an African choreographer in IDF—a context not sufficiently represented in IDF—while Filastine is a duet of an American and an Indonesian artist residing in Barcelona.


The two choreographers in Highlight mark a new phase in each artist’s creative journey. Andara Moeis staged her work when she participated in the workshop P.A.R.T.S—a leading dance school in Brussels—which gave her a new perspective in creation. Meanwhile, Rianto—after collaborating with several international choreographers as a dancer—created a choreography work, his first international co-production.


This year, Showcase focuses on three young choreographers; Ari Ersandi (Lampung-Yogyakarta), Fitri Anggraini (Jakarta), and Nihayah (Surabaya), who were chosen based on their works by three assistant curators from the IDF 2015 curatorial workshop in Yogyakarta. Linda Agnesia, Taufik Darwis, and Nia Agustina come from different generations, backgrounds, and with different track records. They bring this combination in the selection of the three young choreographers in this year’s Showcase. The choreographers are obliged to participate in two workshops by the Akademi IDF on “dancership” and artistic research. They are also accompanied by artistic consultants in perfecting their curated works.

Retrospective Program

IDF 2016 is launching a new program called Retrospective; a program that presents a piece of history of an Indonesian choreographer, whose works and achievements are influential for the development of Indonesian dance today. The first edition focuses on Hoerijah Adam (1936-1971), a female choreographer from Padangpanjang, West Sumatra. IDF sent one of Hoerijah’s collaborators during her time in Jakarta, Sentot Sudiharto, to trace back her history, accompanied by filmmaker Faozan Rizal, interdisciplinary artist Katia Engel, and actor M. Qomaruddin to Padangpanjang, Hoerijah’s hometown. The result is a documentary that becomes a part of the show, an archive-based exhibition of a photo collection by Rasmida (choreographer and professor at ISI Padangpanjang), as well as a discussion that revisits the invaluable legacy and influence of Hoerijah to the development of contemporary dance in Indonesia.

Master Class

Several performing choreographers also give master classes as a learning ground for dance communities in Indonesia. Unlike the long and intensive workshop format held by Akademi IDF, the master classes are more of an eye-opening vehicle to introduce participants to certain practices of artists.

Dance Discussion

IDF selected one theme for the discussion session, and this time, the topic is ‘sonic’ in choreography works, as well as various issues of body and sound.

IDF Award

This is the new name from the program that IDF has had before, Lifetime Achievement Award. This change is based on IDF’s aspiration to broaden the scope of possibility for recognition and acknowledgment to Indonesian dance figures. With Lifetime Achievement Award, the recognition and acknowledgment could only be given to living individuals, whereas with IDF Award, the possibility is open to give the posthumous recognition for individuals with important legacy and track record for Indonesian dance.

Special Feature

Jecko Siompo, a choreographer from Papua, and the collective Animal Pop Dance, are gracing IDF 2016 with their work and presence. Jecko has lately been exploring dance film. IDF 2016 invited him to make a teaser video of IDF 2016. Animal Pop Dance will add zest to IDF 2016 with performances in empty corners of the IDF 2016 venue.

Visiting Residency for Young Choreographers

This program is the continuation of the IDF 2014 program, called Potential Young Choreographers Program at the time. This year, IDF invited approximately a dozen young Indonesian choreographers from different cities, and facilitates them in seeing all the performances and participating in the festival’s events (master classes, workshops, and discussions). This experience is expected to enrich their works in the future.

Akademi IDF

The Akademi IDF is a division of the Indonesian Dance Festival, focusing on educational programs. A series of workshops have been held in 2016 as a ‘warm-up’ before IDF 2016. The workshops were Dancers Workshop and Artistic Research Workshop. During IDF 2016, the Akademi IDF is organizing Dance Criticism Writing Workshop.