So, my collaboration with the innovative events company Azanaya of Jakarta, Indonesia went very well. If this event is news to you, I created a conceptual soundscape based on Rendang food to be listened to when experiencing the food and spices that go into it. Check out the press release.
The event was a huge success with ten or so representatives of broadcast and print media attending as well as the Indonesian Tourism and Creative Economy Minister. The Minister was very impressed by the event and hinted that there could be support for a Rendang World Tour in 2013… Very exciting! The love for accessible food, culture and events has really shined through with Baralek Rendang. This was truly an event for the people, while not being afraid to experiment; and it is this set of values that contributed to the success of the event. Much love was put into Baralek Rendang, and it follows that much love came out of it.
My contribution to this fantastic event was a fascinating challenge for me. I had to create a piece that described the slow, labour-intensive process of Rendang cooking; a process where much love and attention creates a dish suitable for ceremony and warmly welcoming special guests. Rendang is steeped in tradition and local culture with the complexity of it’s flavours only being matched by the complexity of the ingredients and cooking process. Each set of ingredients symbolises a section of the Minang culture: Leadership, religious leaders, intellectuals and the community.
As a backdrop, I used recordings of the Sumatran jungle and coastlines that echo the homes of the Minang people, who created Rendang; the sounds of the jungle changing as the day goes on. Solitary pipes then beckon in the traveller from their weary journey. From this, distant celebratory folk music of the Minang emanates, getting closer and closer to the listener as the Rendang process matures. Sonic interpretations of the various spices used in Rendang cooking are then slowly introduced, each having a prominence of it’s own and part to say regarding the Rendang symbolism. The piece matures ever-so slowly and carefully but all of the sonic ingredients come together in an intricate and hearty peak showing that the Rendang is ready to enjoy. The Rendang is then enjoyed but the very heart of Rendang becomes more prominent in the form of the celebrations that caused it to exist.
If it didnt play automatically, the piece can be heard below, so put some headphones on and enjoy Rendang. Of course, this piece is enjoyed better while enjoying Rendang food, so if you have access to some make sure you combine your tastebuds and ears… If not, then maybe a Rendang World Tour event will be coming to you soon…
Piece is an MP3 to ease your loading time!