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Tuesday March 28th 2017

Enoch Atmadibrata

Culture | Wednesday, 20 January 2010 | sundanesecorner.org

Enoch the veteran choreographer at his house in 2009 (Photo: Hawé Setiawan)

Enoch the veteran choreographer at his house in 2010 (Photograph: Hawé Setiawan)

I made a visit to Enoch Atmadibrata in Thursday afternoon, January 7th. He lives at Jl. Melong Raya 80, Cijerah, Cimahi. This father of two, and grandfather of four, now lives alone at his house. A young man assisted him in filing photos, magazine articles, and research data with a personal computer in a corner of the living room. There was no one at a stage in the yard where people usually practise Sundanese dance and music.

Enoch is a well-known choreographer and ethnic art researcher. In addition to exploring the ibing Sunda (Sundanese dance) and Sundanese performance arts, he devotes attention in undertaking researches on traditional arts, writing books and newspaper articles on the subjects, and organizing dance education.

Enoch was born in Samarang, Garut, West Java, on 19 September 1927. At the end of Dutch colonialism he studied at HIS in Bandung. He began learning ibing Sunda (Sundanese dance) in the era of Japanese occupation. In 1967 Enoch and friends found the Conservatory in Bandung, and he became its director. In the same year he, among others, also found the Department of Dance Study at IKIP Bandung (the present day Indonesian University of Education/UPI).

For 21 months, i.e. from September 1967 to June 1971, he had been undertaking a resident study on ethnomusicology at University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), USA. When he was in USA the Conservatory became the Akademi Seni Tari Indonesia (Indonesian Dance Academy) in 1970—the present day Sekolah Tinggi Seni Indonesia (Indonesian College of Arts).

After he retired from his posts, Enoch founded Jayaloka Foundation in 1985. Its main programmes, among others, are organizing a kindergarten named Taman Kanak-kanak Tutuka and organizing an open stage for performing art named Taman Kesenian Tutuka, the location of which are near Enoch’s house in Cijerah.

“Stay here any longer. I have no one to talk to,” said he when I said goodbye.

Hawé Setiawan

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