Boria for Unesco recognition


Keeping the art alive: The Boria Academy is looking to identify young talents in primary and secondary schools who can carry on the legacy. —ZHAFARAN NASIB/The Star

GEORGE TOWN: The Boria Academy is seeking support from the Penang government and the National Heritage Department in its effort to get boria recognised as a Unesco World Heritage.

Its director, Jibran Khalil Sindamadar, said boria deserves to be elevated as a world heritage as it is a unique art form that has existed in the country since the 19th century, encompassing four elements within one performance, namely sketsa (short plays), rangkap karangan (lyrics), tukang karang (singing) and additional dance movements.

Therefore, he said the academy is actively advocating for boria’s inclusion in the Unesco World Heritage List so that it can be preserved and remain a heritage that stands the test of time, Bernama reported.

Jibran Khalil said their efforts began in 2018, when the academy, together with Jawi Peranakan Organisation president Datuk Dr Wazir Jahan Karim who launched the book Boria: From Passion Play To Malay-Jawi Peranakan Parody, proposed that boria be listed as a Unesco living heritage.

“We have also submitted an application to Datuk Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik, who was then the Deputy Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister. We remain hopeful that the state government, the Heritage Department and Georgetown World Heritage will support us in this endeavour,” he added.

At the Yaribba Boria Raya Feast 2024 here on Monday night, 13 individuals, including Jibran Khalil, received the “Seniman Boria” certificates presented by Penang Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Ahmad Fuzi Abdul Razak.

This serves as recognition and appreciation for boria practitioners who had contributed their energy and creativity to elevate this performance art for many years.

According to Jibran Khalil, the academy also proposed that Lorong Kulit be renamed Jalan Boria as it was a well-known site of boria performances in the early 1950s.

Meanwhile, he said the Boria Academy, established 10 years ago, is working to identify young talents in primary and secondary schools who can carry on the legacy.

The academy is also planning to collaborate with higher learning institutions to establish it as a research and pedagogical hub, with the aim of strengthening the art of boria and passing it on to future generations.

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Boria , Jibran Khalil Sindamadar , Unesco , heritage , art

   

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