Archipel’s Indonesian side revealed on the Tong Tong Trail

Saturday 26 May was a chance to sample another side to the Archipelbuurt. Participants joined the Tong Tong Trail and enjoyed a performance or story about a part of the Indonesian Archipelago after which a particular street in our neighbourhood is named.

Photo: Webteam

In an artist’s studio in Soendastraat, puppeteers ‘Behind the Actors’ from Bandung treated participants on the Tong Tong Trail to a marvellous wayang-golek rod puppet show.



Programme 11.00 – 16.00

Start of the Tong Tong Trail in the Klokhuis Community Centre, where Indonesian literature specialist Vilan van de Loo gives a talk about writer Marie van Zeggelen and about how the Archipelbuurt came into being.

In an artist’s studio, puppeteers ‘Behind the Actors’ from Bandung give a performance with rod puppets: wayang golek.


At the Klokhuis Community Centre, Celine Marbeck talks about her place of birth, Malacca, and about the Kristang ethnic group of people of mixed Portuguese and Malaccan descent (otherwise known as ‘Portuguese-Eurasians’ and ‘Malacceiros’) to which she belongs. Celine will also be serving a simple Kristang cuisine lunch; possibly a recipe from her own cookery book (Cuzinhia Cristang) published in 2004 by the Tong Tong Foundation.

After lunch it’s off to an exclusive fashion show staged by Esmeralda Zee-Hilal, an expert in Indonesian dress.

The last stop on the Tong Tong Trail is a Balinese dance performance by Arjanti Sosrohadikoesoemo.

Want to join in?
Tickets for this cultural trail through the Archipelbuurt cost €15 per person, including lunch. Registration beforehand is necessary so that Celeine knows how many people she has to cater for. Contact Martine Saathof at the Tong Tong Foundation: / 06 14284072 (leave your name and telephone number and Martine will call you back).

More information

Stichting Tong Tong, Bezuidenhoutseweg 331, 2594 AR Den Haag

The 54th Tong Tong Fair takes place on Malieveld from 17 – 28 May. What is special about this year is that this huge Indonesian (Eurasian) event will also be organizing activities in the Archipelbuurt.

The Tong Tong Trail will take in various locations in our neighbourhood, focusing on the Indonesian Archipelago origins of the street names. There will be dance and musical performances and stalls where you can sample typical Indonesian delicacies.

More details of how to register for the events in A&W and the 2012 programme will be available at the end of April. Follow developments at:

and on the A&W digital billboards in Albert Heijn in Sumatrastraat and Citronics in Frederikstraat as well as in the A&W Newsletter in May.

Update on proposal for cooperation between A&W and the Tong Tong Foundation
Two representatives from the Foundation, who are organising the 2012 Tong Tong Fair on the Malieveld from 17 May through 28 May, attended the A&W Community Council meeting on 29 September. They came to elucidate their proposal for the organisation of related themed activities in the neighbourhood in May 2012. For example batik weaving in Balistraat and dance demonstrations in Sumatrastraat. As with the recent Poet in Residence event, residents would also be asked to allow some of the events to take place in their homes. Those present were favourably disposed to the idea.

The Foundation will contact the secretariat again at the beginning of 2012 to develop ideas further, when possible options are clearer and more is known about what means the Tong Tong Foundation will have at its disposal. Dick Nijzink if the City Council voiced his support for such initiatives.

A number of locals have already registered their interest in taking part. If you would like to be involved in some way contact the A&W Residents Association:

Cooperation between A&W and Tong Tong Foundation?

The Tong Tong Foundation (oldest Indonesian cultural organisation in the Netherlands) would like to work together with our neighbourhood to organise an Indisch/Indonesian programme in Archipelbuurt & Willemspark to run concurrently with the Tong Tong Fair from 17 May – 28 May 2012.
The organising committee of the Tong Tong Festival (formerly Pasar Malam Besar) was located in our district for more than thirty years: first in Delistraat and then for many years in Celebesstraat. Chairperson Ellen Derksen still lives here. Next year the foundation would like to play a more active role in the Archipelbuurt.

For example to organise a particular event in each street named after an island or place in the East Indies Archipelago. A weaving or batik making demonstration for example, or a (literary) recital of a particular author’s work or an interview in someone’s living room or a traditional dance performance or a display of costumes on temporary podiums or in homes [ed. or perhaps even in local businesses like the boutique Babs & Lizeth on Bankastraat: Lizeth was born on Sumatra]. This is of course only possible if enough residents (in enough different streets) are willing to give their support to such a plan.

To wet your appetite you might find the foundation’s Haags-Indische literary walk interesting, which starts at the bus stop on Bankastraat! The walk takes in Nassauplein where Louis Couperus lived from 1878-1884; Javastraat where the Couperus Museum is located; Surinamestraat where Couperus lived at number 20 and a bust of him stands in the central garden area; Sophialaan where Multatuli (pseudonym of Eduard Douwes Dekker former civil servant in Indonesia) stayed with his elder brother; and Plein 1813 where Couperus’ parents-in-law lived and where writer P.A. Daum located some of his characters in his book Indische mensen in Holland.

The board of the A&W Residents Association welcomes such a joint initiative. What do the residents think about realising such a joint undertaking? And who would like to be actively involved or participate?

Please send your reactions to the A&W Residents Association <>