Photography: Iwan Kurnia/Indonesia Tatler

The Twilite Orchestra’s August 16 Independence Day Concert Aula Simfonia will show gratitude to the people and the country they love. The country’s most popular symphonic music ensemble and the first to perform on prestigious world stages that include the Sydney Opera House, the Slovak National Theater, and Konzerthaus Berlin originated in June 1991. The orchestra has since expanded from 20 musicians to a pop orchestra of 65 plus the 70-strong Twilite Chorus.

Over the years, it has seen successful stage collaborations with Natalie Cole, Richard Clayderman, Robin Gibb, Maxim, the Moscow Rachmaninov Trio and Il Divo. Conductor Addie MS gives us the lowdown about the concert.

What does Independence Day mean to you?

It is a time to recall the struggles of the founding fathers who sacrificed everything for their fight for our independence. It’s a time when we are reminded that independence and the establishment of the state of the Republic of Indonesia was not a walk in the park, but through the spilling of blood, sweat and tears.

It sends a clear message to make the most of this freedom and enhances our awareness to defend it.

Twilite Orchestra has staged Independence Day concerts a number of times. What has inspired you?

We stage an Independence Day concert almost every year as our contribution to the people and the country. We hope that through popular songs from the provinces and through patriotic anthems we could evoke patriotism and enhance the love of the motherland.

What about the works and numbers you are preparing for 2017’s concert?

Popular songs from “Sabang to Merauke” and patriotic songs like “Hari Merdeka”, “Syukur”, “Satu Nusa Satu Bangsa, “Rayuan Pulau Kelapa”, “Mars Pancasila” and “Berkibarlah Benderaku”.

The interesting thing is how to round it all up in a symphonic arrangement sung by the choir and to encourage the audience to sing along.

Why did you pick those songs? Tell us about the creative process.

The numbers we pick are patriotic anthems and songs from the provinces that we used to hear in school, but which are rarely heard these days. In August, these songs re-emerge and reverberate all through the archipelago, just like Islamic songs during Ramadhan and Christmas songs in December.

Any plans in the near future? Maybe for the year’s end?

Enthusiasm is high and tickets are sold out, but a symphonic concert always faces problems with funding. Let’s cross our fingers and hope for a Twilight Orchestra concert this coming December.

This story first appeared on the August 2017 issue of Indonesia Tatler, to subscribe, click here.

Also read: Meet The Tatler Tribe, The Panelist of Generation T

Tags: Concert, Orchestra, Twilight Orchestra, Indonesia Independence Day, Addie MS