"Through the musical collaboration, it is expected that people from the two countries would understand the cultural richness of each other, which would ultimately encourage the Spanish people to visit Indonesia," the Head of Foreign Culture Diplomacy Sub Directorate at the Ministry of Education and Culture, Ahmad Mahendra, told ANTARA News here on Saturday.
According to the plan, on Saturday night (Dec 16) at local time, or Sunday morning (Dec 17) Indonesian time, two groups of Batak Toba music, Mataniari, and Spanish music group orchestra Siero Chamber Orchestra (OCAS) from Asturias will perform under a theme "Simfonico Indonesia" at Niemeyer Auditorium, Oviedo, which is a famous music building in the city.
Mahendra stated that the second musical collaboration, which will be presented later, is actually a continuation of the "Vinculos Indonesia 2017" program, which has been successfully held in Toba, North Sumatra Province, and Jakarta from July 27 to August 16, 2017.
At Vinculos Indonesia 2017, OCAS and Mataniari held collaborative concerts and seminars, which were enthusiastically welcome by the local people.
This socio-cultural program was also previously conducted at the 2017 Vinculos Indonesia program when OCAS and Mataniari performed didactic concerts at a number of orphanages in Toba and Jakarta.
Through those programs, they campaigned for social and cultural integration through music by involving socially marginalized groups.
"With this integrated campaign, people will know that orchestra music is not really a fancy musical genre, as it can be enjoyed by all audience," he remarked.
Mahendra added that the visit of Mataniari to Spain, organized by the Directorate General of Culture at the Ministry of Education and Culture, was a surprise visit because OCAS was very impressed with Bataknese music genre.
Despite being part of various performances in different countries, the Spanish music group has never come across a local music genre that is equivalent to the harmony of Bataknese music.
"OCAS had been performing music concert for about 15 times in 12 countries, and Indonesia is the 13th country of its tour. It turns out that visiting Indonesia is the most memorable one until now," Mahendra noted.
According to him, the music collaboration program is expected to promote the Bataknese culture to the Spanish people, considering that Lake Toba has been designated by President Joko Widodo as one of the 10 major tourist destinations in Indonesia.
The 10 tourist sites are Lake Toba in North Sumatra, Tanjung Kelayang in Bangka Belitung, Mandalika in West Nusa Tenggara, Wakatobi in Southeast Sulawesi, Morotai Island in North Maluku, Seribu Islands in Jakarta, Tanjung Lesung in Banten, Borobudur Temple in Java Central, Mount Bromo-Tengger-Semeru in East Java, and Labuan Bajo in East Nusa Tenggara.
Mataniari`s return visit to Asturias shows a close and reciprocal cooperation between Indonesia and Spain in culture, which, of course, indirectly promotes Indonesian tourism in the country.