Navy Band gives Indonesian visitor a familiar welcome

Published on LS Cathy Wainwright (author)

Location(s): Fleet Base East, Sydney

Topic(s): Royal Australian Navy Band

The Royal Australian Navy Band played a traditional Indonesian song using Angklung instruments which were gifted to the RAN by the Indonesian Navy in 2012. (photo: Unknown)
The Royal Australian Navy Band played a traditional Indonesian song using Angklung instruments which were gifted to the RAN by the Indonesian Navy in 2012.

The Royal Australian Navy Band went to great lengths to welcome the Chief of Staff of the Indonesian Navy, Admiral Dr Marsetio, to Fleet Base East this week, when he made a counterpart visit to the Chief of the Royal Australian Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs.

The band’s members played a traditional Indonesian song on Indonesian percussion instruments known as Angklung. The instruments had been gifted to the Royal Australian Navy by the Indonesian Navy in 2012.

Proving their musical flexibility, the band members played the Indonesian folk tune Hari Merdeka Indonesia during the ceremony to welcome the Indonesian VIP to the Heritage Centre, Garden Island for his meeting with Vice Admiral Griggs on 12 August.

The Angklung is a musical instrument made of two bamboo tubes, attached to a bamboo frame. The tubes are carved in such a way that they produce a resonant pitch when struck. The base of the frame is held in one hand, while the other hand strikes the instrument.

Admiral Dr Marsetio said that he was very impressed with the performance.

“Hari Merdeka Indonesia lifts the spirits of Indonesian people and is associated with the Proclamation of Indonesians Independence on the 17 August 1945,” he told the crowd.