Traditional games are part of our heritage

Cherish our heritage: (Top) Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Pehin Dato Haji Mohammad (C), plays the 'gasing bu'ut bu'ut' during the workshop for traditional games at Kg Kasat, Lumapas. (Middle) A boy learning how to play 'madam-madaman' one of the traditional toys. (Above) An traditional games expert performs the 'Gasing' spin on the palm of his hand. Pictures: Saifulizam

Thursday, June 26, 2008

INTRODUCING and appreciating traditional games as a cultural heritage was one of the main objectives of the traditional game workshop held at Kampong Kasat, Mukim Lumapas yesterday.

The three-day workshop was organised by the Brunei museum department in collaboration with Mukim Lumapas village consultative council until June 27.

The workshop aims to guide the younger generation in its effort to introduce and cherish the disappearing cultural heritage.

Present as the guest of honour was Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Dewa Mejar General (B) Dato Seri Pahlawan Hj Mohammad Hj Daud, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports.

The minister in his remark said the workshop represents "a positive development particularly in realising the museum department's functions as a government institution in preserving, expanding and unveiling the country's cultural heritage".

He added: "In addition to that, the workshop is conducted as a respond to the call of international bodies, such as the Unesco (United Nations Educational Scentific and Cultural Organization) and Icom (International Council of Museum) towards the issues of the disappearing traditional cultural heritage amid the increasing pressure of globalisation in the form of entertainment and impacts of materialism and technology."

He went on: "Introducing our cultural heritage through exhibitions, workshops, publications and seminars are important to elevate our cultural tradition for the country's sovereignty and integrity as an independent country celebrated for its Malay values in the eyes of the world."

Fifty participants from the Museum Department, Cocurriculum Education Department, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) and three primary schools participated in the workshop.

The workshop exposed participants to both the theory and practical aspects of the traditional games. Some of the traditional games that will be featured during the workshop includes Gasing (top spinning) and Simban.

In an interview with The Brunei Times, Ruzanna Zulkipli and Lizawati Hj Suhaili, participants from the Faculty of Social Sciences (FASS), UBD, were approached by the Enografi curator, Pudarno Binchin to participate in the workshop as it is interrelated with the courses they study.

When asked what they expect to gain from the workshop, Lizawati said: "This workshop is a good chance for us to get to know some of the traditional games. Some of the games are unique to certain villages. It is only in events like this that we can see for ourself how the games are actually played."

Ruzanna added: "Most of the participants are students. Hopefully by participating in this workshop we can learn the games and the students would be able to play the traditional games with their friends in schools."

Ayatul Hisni HBA Hj Ahmad and Nora Irmie Irwani Hj Nasir, both teachers at Lumapas Primary School and participants of the workshop said that they had some ideas regarding traditional games in Brunei as their schools had previously organised an event on Brunei culture for visitors from Singapore and traditional games was one of the main components in that event.

The young participants from Putat Primary School are more than happy to share their thoughts with The Brunei Times.

Halmi Hamizan, 11, who volunteered to participate in the workshop said that he often played the O' Inambang game with his friends as it is the most popular traditional game in his village and added that he would like to know more about other traditional games.

Another participant, Md Rifqi Dullah said the workshop is one of the activities he joined in for the school holidays. The 11-year-old added that he had never been exposed to traditional games as he is more into football but like Halmi, would like to know more about traditional games.

The opening ceremony was full of demonstrations on various traditional games such as 'Hila-hila'an upih' 'gatah', 'Pit surapit' and 'Kerbau-kerbauan'.

Exhibition and handicraft stalls were also set up and guests had the opportunity to admire displays of kain songket — Brunei traditional brocade fabrics, traditional dry food such as kinkin and sapit, and traditional weaponry.

The Brunei Times


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