Biola Nov 18.mp4 (1.27 GB)
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Appendix 4: 'Biola in the Riau Islands: Reefs, Winds and Sea Currents', Film Documentary (11 minutes) November 2018.

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posted on 12.03.2019, 03:56 authored by Karen Kartomi Thomas, salvatore Rossano

This is the first ever film produced on the history of the traditional and contemporary performing arts of Indonesia’s Riau Islands’ province, specifically tracing the so-far little-known history of the violin (called biola in Indonesian language) and its essential place in the music, dance and theatre of the Islands. It brings together original footage of performances and interviews with local musicians and artists, and information from a handful of international academics currently researching the Riau Islands’ performing arts.

The original footage of the film was taken largely by Karen Kartomi Thomas with some excerpts kindly provided from other researchers. The making of the film would not have been possible without the direction, knowledge and skills of many experts including film editor and ethnomusicologist, Dr. Salva Rossano, and producer, ethnomusicologist, and advisor to the contents of the film, Prof. M. Kartomi.

This item is referenced in Margaret Kartomi (ed), Performing the Arts of Indonesia: Malay Identity and Politics in the Music, Dance and Theatre of the Riau Islands, Copenhagen: Nias Press, 2019.


Australian Research Council; MAMU



Karen Kartomi Thomas

Geographic location

Riau Islands Province

Collection date

Film released September 2017

Ethno/lingual group


Collection type

video recording