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wyng keren

How can artist Karen Elizabeth Javanese Tradition?

“I was surprised to see a white woman to be singers in shadow puppet show. Totally shocked! Even now we are increasingly difficult to find young people on the ground who can speak Javanese Java is good and right.”


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KESekararum Indonesian national television (TVRI)

Of Sinden and Blue Eyes

“A woman, complete in her authentic Javanese Kebaya, was singing as a sinden. What’s amazing is that, she is not a Javanese, not even Indonesian. She is in fact a leggy Caucasian woman born in Wisconsin, USA.”

– Rishardana, Mind Scathing

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PHOTO Graham, Duncan. 2007

Shadow puppets reflect old ways

“Tumpang is an ancient hillside farming village in the center of Indonesia’s East Java Province. It squats on the flanks of Mount Semeru, an active volcano puffing gray ash across the countryside and so fertilizing the land.”

– Duncan Graham, Rice Today

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KESekararum Beskalan Putri dance

Indonesians in Focus: Karen Elizabeth Sekararum

“There aren’t too many pesinden in Indonesia and probably none quite like Karen Elizabeth Sekararum. A pesinden is a woman who sings with a gamelan orchestra, often as a solo performer.”

– Duncan Graham, Indonesia Now

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PHOTO Blog Hurek

Elizabeth Karen Sinden from USA

“Saya terkejut menyaksikan perempuan kulit putih menjadi sinden di acara wayang kulit. Benar- benar kaget! Sekarang saja kita semakin sulit menemukan anak-anak muda di tanah Jawa yang mampu berbahasa Jawa secara baik dan benar.”

– Lambertus Hurek

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PHOTO Topeng Story

TOPENG: The Men Behind the Mask

“In many other countries they’d be living out their lives on a state pension, the happy recipients of a grateful society that recognises their contribution to the nation. But Sutrisno and Gimun aren’t former politicians or generals.”

– Duncan Graham, Indonesia Now

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KESekararum Gunungsari masked dance

Mangun Dharma maintains the culture of
live performance

“Has TV murdered indigenous culture? Have the daily demands of job and family, maintaining mortgages and keeping ahead of the bank devoured the time once spent relaxing and creating?”

– Duncan Graham,
The Jakarta Post

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PHOTO Gillian Roberts

In Gesture and Glance: Didi Nini Thowak

“At one time in English theatre, all the parts, female as well as male, were played by men. This cross-gender tradition changed when women took to the stage during the 17th century, and nearly the only remnant of it now is found in the pantomime dame.”

– Gillian Roberts

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Screen Shot 2015-09-26 at 16.41.24

Rescuing the Art of East Java

“The districts of Malang, Surabaya and Jombang have their own distinctive style of wood-carving, singing, dancing, shadow puppetry, theater, and gamelan.”

– Juliana Wilson, 

Island Life Magazine

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A House in Java

The Padhepokan Seni Mangun Dharm (PSMD) is situated in the hamlet of Tulusayu, just outside the market town of Tumpang, some 16 miles east of the city of Malang.”

– Gill Roberts, 

The UK Gamelan Network

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