Rainforest World Music Festival 2017 #RWMF2017

This year, Rainforest World Music Festival celebrates its 20th birthday. The festival is an annual event held at Sarawak Cultural Village, Santubong, Sarawak. The venue is about 45 minutes from Kuching city, the capital city of Sarawak.  Tens of thousands festival goers and visitors came to this iconic three days festival every year. It has become one of the biggest festivals held in Sarawak. This year it was held from 14th until 16th of July 2017.

Rainforest World Music Festival showcases bands, artists and performers from all over the world. They came from various countries such as South Africa, Finland, Indonesia, Tahiti as well Sarawak’s own bands and many more. They brought along their country’s traditional music instruments and some even perform their own traditional musics.

The festival started right at the entrance of the venue. The welcoming stage area provide entertainment all day long. There was also a merchandise shop selling festival merchandise.

The festival runs for three days and everyday was packed with activities. The festival goers can spent a whole day in the venue doing all sorts of activities. They can go shopping for crafts, having all the foods ranging from modern to traditional cuisines, learning how to play Sape or just sit back and relax while having foot massage.

During the day, workshops were held to get the visitors to experience the music, culture and performance up close with the performers. Normally, these workshops will get the visitors to be involved in the sessions, doing activity like learning the traditional dance, trying their instruments and even singing along to their songs. These workshops were held in various places such as the traditional houses and the Dewan Lagenda.

Apart from the workshops, there were also some mini performances by some of the bands. This show will bring the festival goers closer to the bands or artists. They can enjoy their music, which normally will not be performed during the main concerts.

During the night, the real deal begins. The main concert at the ground area started from 7.30 p.m all the way to the wee hours. This year, during the 2nd day of the festival, the concert went on until 2:00 a.m.

Apart from the workshops, mini performances and the main concerts, there were many other activities to be enjoyed during the 3 days festival. There were stalls selling foods, crafts and services (such as foot massage) can be found all over the festival areas. Foods are abundant and festival goers are spoiled for choices.

One of the interesting activities around the festival area.

Vendors selling crafts at Rumah Melanau

This year, it was a bit special for food selection as it was the first time ever Asia Food Kitchen was part of the festival. One part of the Asia Food kitchen was the EATOF Park. EATOF stands for ‘East Asia Tourism Forum’ and previously the Asia Food Kitchen was one of their annual activities. Last year Asia Food Kitchen was organized in Kuching City in tandem with other events such as the annual Sarawak Regatta and Dragon Boat Race. This year Asia Food Kitchen took it a level further by being part of RWMF 2017. EATOF Park by Asia Food Kitchen offered foods selection from countries like Japan, Korea, Indonesia as well as Sarawak’s own cuisines such as the Kolok Mee and Sarawak Laksa. From what we observed, festival goers loved it so much.

Asia Food Kitchen

EATOF Park by Asia Food Kitchen

The crowd for this year’s RWMF was super massive! Visitors came in big numbers all the way from day 1 until day 3 of the festival. From what we saw, compared to last year’s RWMF, this year’s crowd was bigger. Hopefully, it will increase next year, with even bigger crowd turn up for the festival.

The line ups of the performers for this year’s RWMF was also nothing short of awesome. Every evening, the main concert started with opening performance from local bands such as the Sarawak’s very own local bands Ilu Leto and At Adau. It will continue with the mellow and melancholic performance while slowly moving to the more energetic and powerful performance from various international bands and artists. It was like a journey of a soul going slowly through the pristine forest all the way from a cool and dense lowland Dipterocarp forest up to the majestic and scenic montane forest. Everything was so breathtaking and worth every sweat climbing up! That’s how awesome the concert was.

In the end of the day, you wanted more and can’t wait for the next year’s Rainforest World Music Festival. Like what Sarawakian always said, “belalak bah, maok agik!

This festival will always bring some surprises every year. Some of the festival goers that we met said that they have been going for RWMF for 10 or 7 years straight and will come for more for as long as they can. That, make any Sarawakian like us proud to the bone!

Next year, the Rainforest World Music Festival will be on 13th to 15th July 2018, the same venue but surely it will be different in a lot of ways. Like always, it will be full of surprises.

Enjoy the photos around the festival below:

The Iconic Sape’ Master and the National Living Heritage, Sarawak’s very own Mathew Ngau.

3 Responses to Rainforest World Music Festival 2017 #RWMF2017

  1. […] Hotel Kuching hosted Chef Kim Joon Woo at EATOF Park during the recent Rainforest World Music Festival 2017. He came all the from Korea just to share three of the famous Korean delicacies during RWMF. Now, […]

  2. […] previous post we highlighted Sarawak’s very own Ilu Leto as one of our favorites in the last RWMF 2017. This time we want to highlight another band from Sarawak, the famous World Music Band, At Adau. […]

  3. […] have highlighted two of our favorite performances for the 2017 Rainforest World Music Festival, Ilu Leto and At Adau. Here we want to highlight one more band that caught our attention the most […]

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