MATANIARI (Toba Batak Music Ensemble)

MATANIARI (Toba Batak Music Ensemble)

MATANIARI is one the SUARASAMA music divisions which focuses on the Toba Batak traditional dance and music performance: gondangsabangunan, gondanghasapi, anduning-uningan Opera Batak.

MATANIARI involves maestros from Batak Toba musicians, some of them are Marsius Sitohang and Sarikawan Sitohang; two brothers who were born and raised in Batak music culture in particular Opera Batak tradition. Because of their virtuosic music playing, Marsius Sitohang is well-known by a popular name, “The King of Sulim,” while Sarikawan Sitohang is well-known by “The King of Hasapi” among di Batak peoples. They had produced more than 10 traditional music albums in Indonesia. Marsius Sitohang and Sarikawan Sitohang has been involved in many music performance exhibitions in Indonesia and abroad since 1987, some of them were in Holland, Germany, Austria, Belgium, France, Japan, USA, Australia and others.

With other Batak musicians-maestros, they had produced “Batak” music album by New Albion Records, Inc USA in 1992. They also appeared in “Music of Indonesia vol. IV, “Music from Nias and North Sumatra: Hoho, Gendang Karo and Gendang Toba,” published by Smithsonian Folkways USA in 1998. As a music group, MATANIARI is functionally keeping Toba Batak traditional music roots in the form of stage performances. However, more than the tradition, MATANIARI sometimes also involves in the form of experimental works. For instance, they involved in the ethnographic movie project “Rangsa Ni Tonun: A Film about the Sacred Batak Textiles” (by Sandra Niessen-MJA Nashir 2013), where in this film they revitalized a type of weaving song that has long gone. In 2013, the group that led by Irwansyah dan Rithaony had been involved in colossal choral drama project titled “The Story of Buku Ende: Hyms from the Batakland,” which taken from the traditional choral book of Batak Christians, “Buku Ende.” “The Story of Buku Ende” had been performed in Medan (2013), Bandung (2014) and Jakarta (2015).

MATANIARI had performed in several places in Indonesia and abroad, such as “Asian Composers League,” Yogyakarta 1999, ““Millenia Art” Tirtagangga, Bali 1999; Sharq Taronalari Festival, Samarkh and Uzbekistan 2001, North Sumatra Traditional Music an Dance in Guangzhou, China 2001, North Sumatra Traditional Music and Dance in Singapore 2002, dan Asian Composer League and International Puppet Festival, New Zealand, 2007; Pasar Hamburg 2015 and Schriftsprache Indonesiche Handschriften, Berlin 2015 (Frankfurt Bookfair 2015).

Group/Artist name : Mataniari (Toba Batak Music Ensemble)
Origin : Medan, North Sumatra
Number of traveling members : 11 persons

Contact info:
Rithaony Hutajulu
+62 812 608 5395

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