Indonesian pop star wows fans at New Taipei cultural festival
Taipei, Sept. 30 (CNA) Indonesian pop star Siti Badriah's trademark dancing and singing mesmerized her countrymen at the New Taipei City Plaza in Banciao Sunday as thousands of Indonesians in Taiwan swarmed into the plaza to see the show.
Heating up the plaza with her dangdut music, a genre of Indonesian folk and pop derived in part from Hindustani, Malay and Arabic music, Siti's hour-long show was part of New Taipei's annual Indonesian cultural festival.
During a post-show interview, Siti noted that Taiwan was the destination for her first overseas performance in 2012.
Sunday's show marked her third visit to Taiwan and she said she was amazed that her fans were as enthusiastic as her last visit in 2016.
"I was surprised to find that all the Indonesian friends still remember me and my songs, even the newly released songs from my latest album," she said.
The 26-year-old singer also took the opportunity to thank the Taiwan government for its offer of post-disaster assistance to her country following a 7.5-magnitude earthquake that hit Indonesia's Sulawesi Island Friday, leaving hundreds of people dead.
She pledged to visit Taiwan again next year.
Ami, an Indonesian worker based in New Taipei, said that she and her friends took advantage of the weekend to see Siti's show.
Yuri, an Indonesian-Chinese who came to Taiwan over a decade ago, also attended Sunday's festival just to see Siti's performance, together with four of her colleagues currently working in the same company in Taipei.
Siti's show was a good ending to the half-day New Taipei Indonesian Cultural Festival that featured other performances by Indonesian entertainers, as well as dozens of booths set up by the local private and public sectors to offer services to Indonesian workers based in Taiwan.
During the opening ceremony of the festival, New Taipei Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) said the city is home to nearly 50,000 Indonesian nationals, including 40,000-plus Indonesian migrant workers and another 3,700 Indonesians married to Taiwanese, and he thanked them for their contributions to his city and Taiwan as a whole.
Chu also expressed condolences to Indonesia over Friday's earthquake.
Indonesia's new top envoy to Taiwan, Didi Sumedi, who also attended the festival, said it is truly amazing to see so many of his countrymen attending the annual event and he thanked the New Taipei government for providing the facilities for his office to co-organize the cultural festival.
Sumedi took office as representative of the Indonesian Economic and Trade Office to Taipei last month.
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