There are many theories regarding the origin of the slow processional dance of 16th- and 17th-century Europe, the Pavane. Typically, the debate sways between Spanish (pavón) or Italian (derived from a town or dialect in Padova) roots.

Perhaps the most interesting is one which suggests that it was introduced into the Spanish courts by the conquistador Hernán Cortés, who had learned it in America. The problem with this theory is that, Cortés left Spain in 1504 and made his first return in 1528, during which time we find two types of Pavana, “Pavana ala Venetiana” and “Pavana ala Ferrarese” occurring five and four times respectively in the Italian lutenist Joan Ambrosio Dalza’s book Intabulatura de lauto libro quarto, published by Ottaviano Petrucci in Venice, 1508.

In the case of Ravel’s Pavane pour une infante défunte, however, the evocation seems to be clearly towards Spain, where the Pavane was performed in church as a stylish gesture of farewell to the dead. Ravel chose the title because he liked the sound of the words and Jakarta’s music lovers will choose to spend the long weekend in Bandung because this piece is among the highlights of a highly recommended concert titled “Dance!” by the Bandung Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Robert Nordling.

Robert serves as the Music Director of the Bandung Philharmonic (Indonesia), the Baroque on Beaver Island Music Festival (Northern Michigan) and the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra (Chicago). He has appeared with the Grand Rapids Symphony, the orquesta juvenil de Mar del Plata (Argentina), the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute Orchestra, the Cedardell Opera Festival Orchestra, the Wheaton Symphony Orchestra, and chamber orchestras in Chicago, San Francisco and England. He was also the founder and music director of the Bay Chamber Symphony Orchestra (San Francisco). He won a Telly Award in May of 2008 for his recording of Mahler Symphony No. 1 the ‘Titan’, and his recording of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 has recently been released on DVD. Read my interview with him to learn more.

Other highlights of this concert include the seductive Danzón No.2 by Mexican composer Arturo Marquez, as well as the world premiere of the winning work of the Indonesian Young Composer Competition. The program also includes works by Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and Bach. Bandung is famous for its food and factory outlets. Come for the music, stay for the food! And possibly some shopping.

Date/Time: 23 September 2017, 7 PM (try to arrive by 6 PM)
Venue: Teater Tertutup Dago Tea House; Jl. Bukit Dago Selatan 53A, Kota Bandung, Jawa Barat
More info: 087717558749

Marc Brew seems to embody the definition of ‘differently abled’. The things his hands can make his paralyzed legs and wheelchair do make me wonder if any non-diffabled dancers ever watch him and wish they could do what he does. He practically makes paralysis and a wheelchair look like a viable artistic gimmick and prop respectively which only the most gifted dancers can master. Watching him perform, one’s empathy turns to awe so fast it risks turning into envy. Then there’s the bonus of remembering that as the choreographer, the beautiful movements of his ‘able-bodied’ partners are, like his own, all a product of his mind.

This month, presents “The 2nd Indonesian Ballet Gala: An Inclusive Event” which brings together outstanding diffable and non-diffable dancers from across the globe. These include Marc Brew, Magali Saby, Queensland Ballet, CANdoDANCE, Universal Ballet, EKI Dance Company. In addition to Marc Brew, also particularly noteworthy is Magali Saby’s piece La Fille de l’Air, choreographed to be premiered in Indonesia, which she will perform with five professional Indonesian dancers.

Date/Times: 23 September 2017, 1 PM & 7 PM
Venue: Teater Jakarta, Taman Ismail Marzuki, Cikini Jakarta Pusat, DKI Jakarta
Contact: 081293898912 – Reynold

John Paul

John Paul

John Paul studied music in Germany and Italy. He founded an annual charity concert in 2011, helping over 200 children stay in and or return to school.