19 October 2013

Adakah Kesenian Tradisional Batak?

Adakah Kesenian Tradisional Batak?
(Tempo, 7 Oktober 1989)

Kehadiran acara Gita Remaja di layar TVRI yang disajikan mirip dengan Berpacu Dalam Melodi disambut gembira sebagai salah satu wadah pembinaan generasi muda.

Yang menarik perhatian saya adalah ketika pembawa acara menyebutkan penampilan kelompok kesenian tradisional dari Sumatera Utara, yang menyuguhkan “Musik Tradisional Batak” (Acara Gita Remaja tanggal 14 Agustus 1989). Apakah ada kesenian atau kebudayaan “Batak” ? Dari mana datangnya istilah “Batak” dan apa yang dimaksud “Batak” itu sendiri. Suku bangsa Mandailing, Angkola, Simalungun, Pak-pak/Dairi, Toba, Karo, itukah yang dimaksud dengan “Batak”  ?

Coba sekali-sekali anda berwisata ke Sumatera Utara. Ajaklah berdialog masyarakat Mandailing, Angkola atau Karo. Tanyakan apakah mereka orang Batak. Umumnya anda akan memperoleh jawaban : “Tidak.”

Suku bangsa itu masing-masing memiliki budaya dan adat yang berbeda. Kenyataan ini dapat dibuktikan dari segi sejarah, sosial-budaya, maupun musik.

Jadi, apabila yang dimaksud pembawa acara Gita Remaja bahwa kesenian tradisional Batak tersebut adalah gabungan dari beberapa etnis di Sumatera Utara, jelas itu tak benar. Kesenian tradisional yang dipertunjukkan pada acara tersebut adalah satu repertoar kesenian tradisional Toba.

EDI NASUTION 
d/a Yapebuma
Jalan Nibung Raya 194
Lantai III – Medan

**********************

Yapebuma = Yayasan Pengkajian Budaya Mandailing.

Edi Nasution playing the tulila
Biography Penulis:

Edi Nasution hails from Gunung Tua-Muarasoro, Kotanopan – Mandailing Julu, where he was born on 13 March 1963. He obtained his bachelor degree in Ethnomusicology in 1995 from the University of North Sumatra (USU) in Medan, Indonesia. He is the author of Tulila: Muzik Bujukan Mandailing, a study of Mandailing courtship music, published in 2007 by Areca Books (www.arecabooks.com) Penang, Malaysia.

Blog yang dimiliki Edi Nasution
Gondang Mandailing










Tulila : Muzik Bujukan Mandailing
Author Name  :  Nasution, Edi
2007. Areca Books
Soft Cover, 24.1cm x 16.5cm, 180 pages.
ISBN: 978-983-42834-4-5

“Flutings of Love”

One newspaper reviews  Tulila: Muzik Bujukan Mandailing, Edi Nasution’s important account of his experience with an increasingly rare source of music.

by Himanshu Bhatt

It may seem to be just a simple little instrument made out of plain bamboo, but it produces the sweetest of sounds when played.

The thin tulila flute has produced some of the most passionate and romantic music to come out of the remote region of Mandailing on the western coast of Sumatra.

Today, the knowledge of making the flute and the technique of playing it have become endangered, as only a handful of communities still know how to do these things.

A fascination for the flute gripped ethno-musicologist Edi Nasution, a Mandailing himself, to research the origins and special features of the music the little strip of wood could produce.

Edi’s research, which he started in preparation for his student thesis at the Universitas Sumatera Utara in 1995, is now published in a book called Tulila: Muzik Bujukan Mandailing.

What makes the research precious is that the tradition of making and playing the tulila is expected to become extinct by 2010.

“In this era of globalisation, a large portion of our traditional culture is on the brink of disappearing,” says Edi.

The awareness consumed Edi to travel around 18 districts in Mandailing to document and chronicle the unwritten legacy of this folk instrument.

Edi found that the tulila tradition developed a rather complex repertoire of music that was largely inspired by sounds of nature, as its music emulates the buzz of insects, the chirping of birds and the rustle of the wind.

“What makes the bamboo flute particularly distinctive is that it was, until a few decades back, commonly used by men to court women,” Edi explains.

It was common for men to play the flute while reciting improvised pantun (rhymes) in the vernacular language.

Played over hundreds of years, the hand-made tulila flute is a cultural unique feature as it evolved to fuse the art of music among common people.

“There are today about 40,000 Mandailings, descendents of migrants since the 19th century, still living in Malaysia,” says Abdur-Razzaq Lubis, the Malaysia-Singapore representative of the Mandailing All Clans Assembly.

Many cultural traits, including the Mandailing dialect, have dwindled tremendously in Malaysia over the past few decades, he adds.

“The research done by Edi is significant to us in Malaysia as there is still some Mandailing music, like the gordang sambilan, being practised here.”

Edi’s efforts triggered an Asian university to express interest in recording the existing repertoire of the tulila tradition before it disappears.

The story of the tulila and its impending demise as an art form and a cultural practice is a reminder to all Malaysians of how fragile and precious the cultural treasures we still have are.

Tulila: Muzik Bujukan Mandailing is available at major bookstores.

Review previously published in New Straits Times, February 3, 2008.

Source : Arecabooks.com.

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