One of my favorite sports is Pencak Silat, an original martial art from Indonesia that involves striking, grappling, and throwing. Fighters are also allowed to use certain types of weapons. There are various styles of Pencak Silat, and every each of them is unique. I have joined Pencak Silat “Perisai Diri” since senior high school as an extracurricular.
During my exchange program, my Host School teacher suddenly asked me whether I have any talent to be performed, like singing or dancing. Well definitely my answer was,” No, I can’t. I am bad at singing and dancing hahaha. But, I think I can do Indonesian original martial art, Pencak Silat”. Then my teacher asked me to join the Enjoy Performance Audition next week. Honestly, at that time I didn’t have any idea about what is “Enjoy Performance” and what is the purpose of the event. Why did they put “enjoy” on the name of the event. But, I said “Sure, I will !”. It was a short and fast conversation.
Long story short, I passed the audition. “You passed the audition! The event will be held in February, and you will perform in front of all school members. Enjoy Performance is part of Graduation Ceremony event!”, my teacher said. I was surprised. I didn’t know that I should perform it in front of all school members at the graduation ceremony. I got goosebumps all over my stomach. But not because I was scared. It was because I was too happy to know that I had a great chance to show one of my country’s cultures, Indonesian martial art, Pencak Silat.
When I know that I will perform Pencak Silat in front of all school members, I practiced a lot before the performance to make sure it will be good. I didn’t want to waste this opportunity. Fortunately, I brought a Pencak Silat uniform and one of the Pencak Silat weapons to Japan. So I was ready to do the performance.
I performed one of the Pencak Silat Perisai Diri techniques, “Teknik Minangkabau”, that was adopted from Minangkabau’s Culture, the largest ethnic group on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. I also did some improvisation moves using the weapon that I brought. It is a ½ kilogram folding fan, made out of steel, hence it will make a big sound when it is opened and it is good for performance.
The event held at the Sports Hall. The stage was unique. The stage was surrounded by audience from every direction, and I was standing behind them. I was so nervous. There were a lot of people there.
Suddenly, all the lights turned off and I was told to walk into the stage. I was passing through the audience, but no one realized I passed by because it was too dark. I’m not lying, I felt like a Ninja. I wish I can put a laughing emoticon on this newsletter :D. The Master of Ceremony welcomed me, “The next one, student exchange from Indonesia, performing Pencak Silat, Indonesian martial art, Felix Kho!”. All the spotlights shine on me. Now, I’m feeling like I was an Indonesian athlete that was participating in the Olympic LOL. The audience surprised because I was suddenly appeared in the middle of them, standing on the stage. Well, actually I was also shocked about the lights. I didn’t expect it and I’m still wondering who arranged the scenario of the lights. It was cool, hahaha.
I started my performance when the music began. I could not see the audience clearly because the spotlights shone directly at me. Therefore, I felt like I were the only person in the Sports Hall. It made me feel more relaxed, calmed, and more concentrated. My body was just flowing and did the moves. Thanks to whoever arranged the lights!
Everyone clapped their hands when my performance finished. It went smoothly and I didn’t make any big mistakes during the performance. What a relief. The only thing that went bad was my body because I hurt my back, palm, and knee. I did a lot of forwarding rolls and some of them weren’t perfect, so I hurt my back. Because the folding fan was made of steel and I made a little bit of mistakes when I used it, I got a small wound on my palm. And another big wound on my knee that I didn’t know where it came from. But it was not a big deal
Two days later, my host school gave me the recording of my performance on a CD. I was very happy that I can show it to my host family since they couldn’t see my performance because it was held at my school. My host family and I planned to watch it in the evening while we’re having our dinner.
My host mom played the CD on her laptop on the dining table, but surprisingly there was only sound without any video at all. We thought the laptop didn’t work properly, so we tried to play it on TV. Turned out it was the same. There was no video file at all hahaha. We laughed and continued our dinner.
Now, I am planning to ask for the video as soon as possible. I haven’t got a chance to ask for the video file from my teacher because the school is still on a holiday. Let’s hope the video file does exist hahaha. Thank you for reading my story!