Thousands of people filled the Seribu Bukit Stadium in Blangkejeren City, Aceh, on Sunday (13/08) to watch performers put on the traditional Saman dance.
The performance, dubbed the “10,001 Saman Dancers,” broke the record for most Saman performers in one exhibition, according to the Indonesian Museum of Records (MURI).
Aceh Tourism Agency head Reza Pahlevi said that in 2014, as many as 5,000 performers put on the same dance, the highest number at that time. Unesco listed the dance as part of its World Cultural Heritage attractions in 2011.
“This year’s dance was a collaboration between the Aceh government and the Gayo Leus district administration. Let us preserve this dance together,” Reza said.
The Saman dance is studied by schoolchildren throughout the province.
“The event is one of the efforts and commitments of Gayo Lues and the Aceh administration to preserve, maintain and promote Saman dance as their identity,” he added.
Tourism Minister Arief Yahya praised the new record, calling on the public to preserve their traditional heritage as a means to improve communal welfare.
“It is time for Aceh’s tourism, through the Saman dance, to attract more visitors,” Arief said.