(Left to right) Ricard Hutapea, Butet Kartaredjasa, BCA Bank Director Santoso, Sigit Pramono, Dwiki Dharmawan, Ermy Kullit, Reza "The Groove" and Deputy Regent Probolinggo Ahmad Timbul during a press conference on Thursday (11/8) at Galeri Indonesia Kaya, Grand Indonesia Mall, Jakarta. (JG Photo/Annisa Dina)

Jazz Gunung Takes the Spirit of Independence Day Above Sea Level


AUGUST 15, 2016

Jakarta. The annual Jazz Gunung returns for the eighth edition at the iconic Mount Bromo, East Java, venue rising 2,000 meters above sea level, on Aug. 19-20.

Taking place over the weekend after Independence Day, Jazz Gunung brings together a list of international and local acts including Shaggydog, Spanish guitarist Ian Scionti, veteran jazz musicians Ermy Kullit and the Groove at the Jiwa Jawa Resort Amphitheater in Mount Bromo.

Event founder Sigit Pramono said the amphitheater at the resort is 6 kilometers away from the cauldron, ensuring that it is safe from the active volcano.

“The safe distance from the cauldron is 1 kilometer. We built the amphitheater 6 kilometers away,” he said.

Jazz Gunung has been gaining popularity over the years. The inaugural event in 2008 attracted 300 attendees, but last year they managed to bring 1,800 guests to the venue.

However, for safety reasons, organizers told press that they limit the number of guests to 2,000 people.

Festival co founder Butet Kartaredjasa said Jazz Gunung is now considered an integral part of jazz development in Indonesia.

 "One of the distinctive aspects of Jazz Gunung is that it involves participation from traditional musicians in East Java, particularly Probolinggo. It proves that jazz could also be useful in the process of getting to know Indonesia,” he said.

Deputy Probolinggo district head Ahmad Timbul said the annual festival has a good economic impact on the district, with hotels and homestays packed with visitors.

"We have improved the infrastructures around the area to minimalize bumpy roads and to make sure the ride to the venue goes without a hitch," he said.

Musicians Ermy Kullit, Dwiki Dharmawan, Ricad Hutapea and Bonita said the weather is going to be the biggest challenge, as they may have to perform in icy cold air at around 10 to minus eight degrees. Ricad, who performed last year, said the low temperature is not friendly to their instruments and may cause minor changes in the sounds.

Tickets for Jazz Gunung Bromo are available from jazzgunung.com. Prices ranging from Rp 600,000 ($45)-1,500,000.