i just don’t get it

by livergirl

So I’ve just got home from this concert:

which I really look forward since last week because I wanted to try the venue: Aula Simfonia Jakarta, which they said is the best concert hall in Jakarta.

The venue, well, I have to say, I don’t like it. It’s just…overdo. The portraits of the composer might be useful though, for example if a child gets curious and ask his/her parents who are those people and then he/she become interested in music etc etc.

But I hate the statues! It was just…too yellow, and too…gold. The background is too red. I don’t know exactly, but they all seem not nice to me. I think the statues represent the Muse, which is a good thing so people will have a glance on Greek myth. But again, they seem unnecessary.

Instead, I think they can invest the money for the seating, which is one of the most uncomfortable seats. Even the chairs for Magnificat choir practice were much better. The seats are all made of wood, and they are attached to this seating level (which makes me feel like Istora Senayan) and no cushion in any shape.

I think they should invest on the carpet also. It is quite important to have it because woman shoes clapped (most of the time) loudly. And you know Indo people, they can’t sit still.

The other thing, they might need to concentrate on lighting. It was too bright in the audience seats. It was maybe a good idea to place the orchestra in the middle, but it makes the audience can see the audience across them. And the lighting for the audience at the back of the orchestra was as bright as the orchestra itself. It was a bit distracting, at least for me. It might be better to somehow control the light so it shines only for the orchestra.

Another point taken, I think the stage is so small. They can barely walk there.

However, I am most disappointed by the ushers. Before the doors were open, I asked the fully-makeup’d-colored-contact-lens-but-I-think-she-needs-to-visit-her-dentist-soon girl which stairs I should take to my seat.

She said, “either left or right. The other ushers will direct you,”


We took the left one and came across a big door. There’s another usher there so I gave her our tickets for her to look at. Then she said, “that way please,” and let us in.

So of course we just sat according to the numbers. But like ten minutes later, another usher came and asked to see our tickets.

Then he said, “your seats are not there. You’re supposed to sit at mezzanine level upstairs,”

WHAT? Are they paid or just volunteers? It wasn’t so hard to remember the seating arrangement, right?

Should blame the direction also. There was not even a sign “Mezzanine”, only a small “M”. Who would think that M means Mezzanine??


So anyway after all the incidents with ushers and my opinions about the place, I hoped that it will be a great musical experience.

Well, not really.

Die Fledermaus’ Overture was quite good by the time we’ve realized the song. In the beginning, the strings felt…broken. Not whole. Felt something missing with the sound of the woodwinds also. And I think the brass missed some things along the song, but nevermind.

The next were harp concertos, which I cannot really understand nor appreciate. But the second one (Faure’s) was quite enjoyable.

OH and I believe this was the time when the strings were hanging a very long note at the end and I swear I heard this high-freq ring which was sooooo annoying and stop only when the clarinet played the final note. Maybe it was the type of frequency which older people can’t hear since my sis n I definitely heard it but my parents didn’t.

The final piece of the first half was…a bit weird. It features 2 pianos played by two famous pianist and a set of Balinese Gamelan (I swear they were the same persons who taught me back then in Sanur). But then, I can’t hear the gamelan (almost) at all when the orchestra is playing. And it sounds…messy. Was it the acoustic? The flow of the song was like this: mf-messy, then ff-climax (which sounds good) then another mf-messy, then suddenly the gamelan team and the choir did the Kecak chants.

My response was like…hehh?

Yea and I almost forgot to mention the choir, since I barely hear them. I can feel theย ambiance they were trying to deliver, but it sounds far far away. The placement of the choir and the soloist was a failure, for me.

Then comes the intermission.

As always, people were late for the second half. And I thought they won’t allow anyone to interrupt any song. WRONG ANSWER. At least 4 people were allowed to enter during the first movement of the first song. Not to mention others who were allowed during other songs.

I don’t even remember the second half, really. I think it was really not special. I cannot even keep my mind inside the room. The Cavalleria Rusticana was good and familiar. And there were some parts of the harp concerto which I like. But I guess that’s it.


Random points: The harp soloist look so handsome in the brochure but in real live…not so much. His outfit selection didn’t help at all. And he was a lot like my senior from afar.

The booklet was so not environmentally friendly. It contains a lot of good papers. Too many profiles also (1 person can take 2 pages, and that wasn’t the main soloist).

Indo people…my goodness, they are crazy about BBM. At least five people are BBM-ing during the final movement. You paid 200k-350k to BBM?? Ckckck.

My main reason was to feel the concert hall that was, they said, the best in Indonesia. And in the end, I just don’t get it. Why bother to build such a huge concert hall if the acoustic wasn’t even rated satisfactory? And with such an over-the-top interior which looks ugly in my eyes. It was just overrated.


I don’t want to say that I disappointed, though.




Well maybe yes I am.