Gawai Tourism 2011 at Annah Rais

It was a rainy day on the 3rd of September 2011, all the way to late evening. Maybe that’s why the turnout was low, even with free food. The event started early, by noon many villagers opened up their stalls selling food, drinks and crafts. This year is the 2nd year it’s held, this time in Kpg. Saba (translated as the upper village) longhouse.

By 7.30 PM, the VIP arrived, YB James Dawos. It was so 1Malaysia, national anthem, 1Malaysia song etc. The programme began with traditional performances by the villagers and the invited dancers from Kpg. Semban, the ones who still wear the brass coils around their legs, arms and stomachs.

After the first biranggie (traditional dance), the VIP gave his speech. And what a long winded one it was. Of course, I should have expected it. I have yet to listen to a short, simple and to the point speech given by a local politician, Sadly, it’s publicity time! He’s repetitive, boring and has the least inspiring voice I’ve ever heard. Halfway through it people were beginning to nod off and play with their apps.

While the MC decided to speak only in Malay, so I’m guessing the foreigners just try to make the best of what’s going on.

What’s with the smoky stage effect anyway? It stinks, and the older dancers cringed whenever thick smoke started to engulf the stage. Not to mention the lighting (those big concert lighting) which blinded the poor ladies.

The last event is the joget time, with a live band and guest star Claudia Geres. Still much to improve, but it’s still in its second year. Great effort, although I wished it was more encompassing so that the Bidayuhs from other regions can join in and promote their own brand of culture.


3 comments

  1. dear friend,

    i am 1 of the organiser for the Gawai Tourism..ive read ur post and im 95% agree with u..thank for the comments on the smoke,lighting and most important the language by the mc..there should be 2 mc’s 1 malay n 1 english…next year we will try 2 includes more other dayaks in this event…should u have more comments and suggestion do 4wd to me..it will be much appreciated..tq

  2. dear friend..we will b having an organizing committee meeting on the 13th of may 2012 @ 2pm…At annah rais longhouse..we are inviting you to come to assist us in contributing ur ideas..please call 016 867 4175 (edward) to confirm your attendance.. tq

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