Hey, where is your baju kurung?

Something old… Siti teases cultural show audience: Hey, where is your baju kurung
SITI, Siti.

That’s the name on practically everyone’s lips at the Johor Cultural Extravaganza held at NUS University Cultural Hall last Friday night.
By Eri Akbar

06 September 2005
SITI, Siti.
That’s the name on practically everyone’s lips at the Johor Cultural Extravaganza held at NUS University Cultural Hall last Friday night.

Malaysia’s numero uno singer Siti Nurhaliza was the highlight of the show organised by the Johor Heritage Foundation.

She certainly delighted the 500-odd audience, who waited with bated breath for her to take over the stage in the second half of the show.

The 26-year-old Siti received boisterous cheers from the audience when she greeted them in a pristine white baju kurung. Her perfectly coiffed French twist was adorned only with a simple sanggul (Malay hair accessory).

The intimate affair provided an opportunity for Siti to interact with the audience.

Siti started by requesting that the lights be switched on, so that she could see the audience in the balcony seats.

Then, she teased some members of the audience for not turning up in baju kurung. She also made small talk about zapin, a type of Malay dance.

Siti sang her own hit songs like Balqis, Cindai and Nirmala, which are from her ethnic albums.

Before launching into Nirmala, Siti pointed her microphone towards the audience, asking them to sing the first line from the song.

FLUID DANCE MOVES

When the audience sang at the top of their lungs, Siti chided them jokingly: ‘Traditional Malay songs are melodious and have to be sung gently.’

Obviously inspired by Siti’s encouragement, the audience fared much better on their second try.

Siti showed off her fluid dance moves while singing Nirmala.

But halfway through the song, she said, tongue in cheek: ‘I’m dancing dangdut (a type of Indonesian music) style. The composer must be angry.’

The composer, who’s simply credited as Pak Ngah in her album, was among the musicians in the show.

The Johor Heritage Foundation dance troupe, which included talented primary school children, entertained throughout the two-hour programme.

Scenes of a wedding and a kampung were created through song-and-dance items.

A handful of Johoreans had turned up for the event in buses parked outside the venue.

Some Singaporean supporters received a ‘thank you’ from Siti when they yelled from their seats, telling her that they had attended her concert at the Singapore Indoor Stadium two months ago.

Singaporean teacher Siti Maisura, 31, said: ‘I seldom miss a show that has Siti in it.

‘She’s not just a good singer. She’s the model Malay girl.’

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