Indonesia Raya

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Indonesia Raya
English: Great Indonesia
Recording from 1945

National anthem of  Indonesia
Also known asIndonesia Raja → (old spelling) (English: Great Indonesia)
LyricsWage Rudolf Soepratman, 1924
MusicWage Rudolf Soepratman, 1924
Adopted17 August 1945 (original)
17 August 1950 (official)
Audio sample
'"Indonesia Raya"'
(Symphonic rendition by Jozef Cleber)

Indonesia Raya (English: Great Indonesia) is the national anthem of Indonesia, has been the national anthem since the proclamation of Indonesian independence on 17 August 1945. The song was introduced by its composer, Wage Rudolf Soepratman, on 28 October 1928 during the Second Indonesian Youth Congress in Batavia.[1] The song marked the birth of the all-archipelago nationalist movement in Indonesia that supported the idea of one single "Indonesia" as successor to the Dutch East Indies, rather than split into several colonies. The first newspaper to openly publish the musical notation and lyrics of "Indonesia Raya" — an act of defiance towards the Dutch authorities — was the Chinese Indonesian weekly Sin Po.[2]

The first stanza of Indonesia Raya was chosen as the national anthem when Indonesia proclaimed its independence at 17 August 1945. Jozef Cleber, a Dutch composer, created an arrangement of the tune for philharmonic orchestra in 1950. This arrangement is widely used.[3]

Indonesia Raya is played in flag raising ceremonies in schools across Indonesia every Monday. The flag is raised in a solemn and timed motion so that it reaches the top of the flagpole as the anthem ends. The main flag raising ceremony is held annually on 17 August to commemorate Independence day. The ceremony is led by the President of Indonesia and is usually held in Merdeka Palace.

During the rendition or singing of the national anthem, all present except those in uniform should stand, face toward the music, and pay respect. Members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present and not in uniform may render the military salute; those not should stand still.[4]


Indonesian Youth Congress[edit]

When he lived in Jakarta, Soepratman read an essay from Timbul magazine. The essay author challenged Indonesian music experts to compose Indonesian national anthem. Soepratman - who was also a musician - felt challenged, and started composing. In 1924, the song was completed during his time in Bandung and entitled Indonesia.

In 1928, youths from across Indonesia held the first Indonesian Youth Congress, an official meeting to push for the independence of the nation. Upon hearing about the efforts, young reporter Wage Rudolf Soepratman contacted the organizers of Congress with the intention of reporting the story, but they requested that he not publish the story from fear of Dutch colonial authorities. The organizers wanted to avoid suspicion so that the Dutch would not ban the event. Supratman promised them this, and the organizers allowed him free access to the event. Supratman was inspired by the meetings and intended to play the song for the conference. After receiving encouragement from the conference leader Sugondo Djojopuspito, Soepratman played the song on the violin, hoping that it would someday become their national anthem. Soepratman first performed Indonesia on the violin on 28 October 1928 during the Second Indonesian Youth Congress.[5] He kept the script to himself because he felt that it was not the appropriate time to announce it.[6]


Following the Second Youth Congress, the text of Indonesia was distributed by many political and student organisations. The press also played a key role in the publication of the song. On 7 November 1928, the Soeloeh Ra'jat Indonesia daily published the words to the song. This was followed by the Sin Po Chinese weekly on 10 November.[7] In 1929, Wage Rudolf Supratman changed the title of his song to Indonesia Raya and appended the phrase "national anthem of Indonesia" below it, but the text of the song did not change. Soepratman personally printed and distributed copies of the song with its new title through pamphlets. All one thousand copies of the manuscript were sold within a short amount of time to his friends and family.[8]

A businessman friend of his, Yo Kim Tjan, also expressed interest in recording Indonesia Raya. With Soepratman's consent, Yo created a copy of the song on a gramophone record overseas to obtain the best sound quality with the intention of bringing the copy back to Indonesia. However, before Yo was able to do so, Dutch colonial authorities had imposed a ban on the song. Yo was unable to bring the original back but was able to bring home a copy. According to Yo, Soepratman had also given him the rights to sell record copies of Indonesia Raya through his store Toko Populair.[9]

Orchestral rendition[edit]

Initially, there had been no orchestral rendition of the anthem. Thus in 1950, President Sukarno made an appeal to Jozef Cleber to compose a symphonic rendition of Indonesia Raya.

Cleber at the time had been among the 46 persons of the Cosmopolitan Orchestra, under direction of Yvon Baarspul, sent by the Netherlands government to help the Indonesian government for its own music development in Jakarta. "Jos" Cleber was an experienced arranger for not only popular songs back in his hometown, but also for Indonesian pop song arrangements such as Di Bawah Sinar Bulan Purnama and Rangkaian Melati. The final rendition of the anthem is still in common use today.

The arrangements starts with a Tutti of strings and trumpets (in Verse A) that represents a brave and an elegant sound, and in the middle of the song (in Verse B) is played smoothly by strings, and finally (in Verse C) comes another Tutti of strings and trumpets, together with the timpani and cymbals, giving it a brave sound fitting for a national anthem that was respected by the people.

The original recording was recorded by the Cosmopolitan Orchestra under Cleber's direction on Phillips tape in 1951 by the Radio of Jakarta. The record was digitally restored in 1997 in Australia based on Cleber's sheet music that was kept in Jakarta, and it was played again by the Victorian Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Addie MS.


In 1951, ownership of the copyright to Indonesia Raya came into question. President Sukarno ordered a search for the rightful heir to Soepratman.[10] By law, Supratman was the copyright holder of Indonesia Raya as its composer. After Soepratman's death in 1938, ownership of the rights to his works fell upon the designated heirs, his four surviving sisters. However, because Indonesia Raya was officially adopted as the national anthem of Indonesia on 17 August 1945, the work became the property of the state. In addition, the name of "Wage Rudolf Supratman" must be listed as its creator.[11]

As a national anthem, copies of Indonesia Raya cannot be circulated as merchandise to be sold. Consequently, the government had the obligation to obtain all the rights to distribute the song, including the original recording, from Yo Kim Tjan. In 1958, the government obtained the sole right to Indonesia Raya from Soepratman's family.[12] The following year, Yo handed the original record of the song to the Indonesian government. With the recommendation of the Department of Education, the government also rewarded Soepratman's sisters with 250,000 Indonesian rupiah each on 31 May 1960.[13]

National anthem[edit]

Indonesia Raya, as stated in the 1945 Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia is the national anthem of Republic of Indonesia.[14] This is stipulated in the Chapter XV, Article 36B of the constitution.[15]

Furthermore, based on Peraturan Pemerintah Nomor 44 Tahun 1958[16] (PP No.44/1958 - Government Regulation Number 44 Year 1958), the first stanza of "Indonesia Raya" is used as the official lyrics of the national anthem of Indonesia.


There is no official translation of Indonesia Raya into other languages. On 28 October 1953, on the 25th anniversary of the anthem, the Harian Umum daily published their own English, German, and Dutch translations of the song. A bulletin released by the Ministry of Information used these translations.[17] Currently, however, the translations are no longer published.

Current orthography
Van Ophuijsen orthography
English translation

Indonesia, tanah airku
Tanah tumpah darahku
Di sanalah aku berdiri
Jadi pandu ibuku

Indonesia, kebangsaanku
Bangsa dan tanah airku
Marilah kita berseru
Indonesia bersatu!

Hiduplah tanahku, hiduplah negeriku
Bangsaku, rakyatku, semuanya
Bangunlah jiwanya, bangunlah badannya
Untuk Indonesia Raya

Indonesia Raya, merdeka! Merdeka!
Tanahku, negeriku yang kucinta
Indonesia Raya, merdeka! Merdeka!
Hiduplah Indonesia Raya!

Indonesia, tanah yang mulia
Tanah kita yang kaya
Di sanalah aku berdiri
Untuk selama-lamanya

Indonesia, tanah pusaka
Pusaka kita semuanya
Marilah kita mendoa
"Indonesia bahagia!"

Suburlah tanahnya, suburlah jiwanya
Bangsanya, rakyatnya, semuanya
Sadarlah hatinya, sadarlah budinya
Untuk Indonesia Raya

Indonesia Raya …

Indonesia, tanah yang suci
Tanah kita yang sakti
Di sanalah aku berdiri
Menjaga ibu sejati

Indonesia, tanah berseri
Tanah yang aku sayangi
Marilah kita berjanji
"Indonesia abadi!"

Selamatlah rakyatnya, selamatlah putranya
Pulaunya, lautnya, semuanya
Majulah negerinya, majulah pandunya
Untuk Indonesia Raya

Indonesia Raya …

Indonesia, tanah aïrkoe
Tanah toempah darahkoe
Di sanalah akoe berdiri
Djadi pandoe iboekoe

Indonesia, kebangsa'ankoe
Bangsa dan tanah aïrkoe
Marilah kita berseroe
Indonesia bersatoe!

Hidoeplah tanahkoe, hidoeplah negerikoe
Bangsakoe, rakjatkoe, semoeanja
Bangoenlah djiwanja, bangoenlah badannja
Oentoek Indonesia Raja

Indonesia Raja, merdeka! Merdeka!
Tanahkoe, negerikoe jang koetjinta
Indonesia Raja, merdeka! Merdeka!
Hidoeplah Indonesia Raja!

Indonesia, tanah jang moelia
Tanah kita jang kaja
Di sanalah akoe berdiri
Oentoek selama-lamanja

Indonesia, tanah poesaka
Poesaka kita semoeanja
Marilah kita mendoa
"Indonesia bahagia!"

Soeboerlah tanahnja, suburlah djiwanja
Bangsanja, rakjatnja, semoeanja
Sadarlah hatinja, sadarlah budinja
Oentoek Indonesia Raja

Indonesia Raja …

Indonesia, tanah jang soetji
Tanah kita jang sakti
Di sanalah akoe berdiri
Mendjaga iboe sedjati

Indonesia, tanah berseri
Tanah jang akoe sajangi
Marilah kita berdjandji
"Indonesia abadi!"

Selamatlah rakjatnja, selamatlah poetranja
Poelaunja, la'utnja, semuanja
Madjoelah negerinja, madjoelah pandoenja
Oentoek Indonesia Raja

Indonesia Raja …

Indonesia, cherished land!
'Tis for thee our blood is shed,
On guard for thee we stand,
This land fore'er to be led.

Indonesians, our people!
Each other we do uphold,
In declaration wholesale:
To each other be true!

Let her people, her land,
Let her mighty peaks and prodigious sands,
In body, in spirit, let them all arise,
For Indonesia the Great!

Indonesia the Great, be free, be free!
These isles of ours beloved dearly!
Indonesia the Great, be free, be free,
For Indonesia the Great!

Indonesia, land sublime,
Fore'er bountiful and free,
Where our roots we shall plant,
For millenia to stand

Indonesia, land of inher'tance,
Entrusted to us all,
For one thing we all ask,
Strengthened, our esperance!

Fertile are her fields, holy her soul
From Sabang to Merauke, hear the call!
With hearts awakened, with goodwill served,
For Indonesia the Great!

Indonesia the Great...

Indonesia, land so pure,
A land mighty with resolve,
To thee we pledge allegiance,
Only thee to love!

Indonesia, resplendent land,
Patriot love in us command,
Foremost in our hearts and minds,
Indonesia, fore'er to stand!

May her people, her land, may her peaks and her sands,
From sea to seas, in peace be,
May they all then advance, may they all then commence,
For Indonesia the Great!

Indonesia the Great...

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Indonesia - Indonesia Raya". Retrieved 27 November 2011.
  2. ^ "National Geographic Indonesia Pewarta Melayu-Tionghoa di era pergerakan nasional". Archived from the original on 7 February 2011.
  3. ^ "Error".
  4. ^ Undang-Undang Republik Indonesia Nomor 24 Tahun 2009 (in Indonesian). 2009 – via Wikisource.
  5. ^ Sularto 1982, p. 20
  6. ^ Sularto 1982, pp. 11–13
  7. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 37
  8. ^ Sularto 1982, p. 28
  9. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 38
  10. ^ Winarno 2003, p. 63
  11. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 61
  12. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 62
  13. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 64
  14. ^ Wikisource:Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia#Section XV .2A.2A : The State.27s Flag.2C Language.2C and Coat of Arms.2C and The National Anthem
  15. ^ s:Constitution of the Republic of Indonesia#Section XV .2A.2A : The State's Flag, Language, and Coat of Arms, and The National Anthem
  16. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 October 2012. Retrieved 3 July 2009.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) (a news article stating the regulation regulating the symbol and instrument of the country)
  17. ^ Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya 1972, p. 59


  • Panitia Penyusun Naskah Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya (1972), Brosur Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya (in Indonesian), Jakarta: Proyek Pengembangan Media Kebudayaan, OCLC 2391302.
  • Sularto, Bambang (1982), Sejarah Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya (in Indonesian) (1st ed.), Jakarta: Balai Pustaka, OCLC 10894709.
  • Winarno, Bondan (2003), Lagu Kebangsaan Indonesia Raya (in Indonesian), Jakarta: TSA Komunika, ISBN 979-97105-1-0.

External links[edit]