Seeking music teaching or English tutoring work


Hi there,

I hope you don't mind me making an inquiry - I have seen advertisements on Indeed for K-12 Music teachers and t I don't specifically match the criteria I haven't had much luck searching so far so I wanted to put out there what I have to offer and seek further suggestions on seeking teaching work in Indonesia. I am a native English speaker born in Sydney, Australia. I have taught music theory and composition at the University of Sydney (Sydney Conservatorium) for fifteen years as well as various high schools in Sydney, have a PhD and have also taught drums and percussion to high school students around Sydney as well as private English tutoring.

I am hoping to try to find teaching work either long term or as a guest for a period of at least a few months, in Java or West Java.
Best wishes,


International schools are likely to be your best bet.
Google search time - Good luck :)

Thanks Fred :)

Have you tried all the international schools in Bandung? They've been renamed independent schools.

Aside from that, if you are married to an Indonesian woman and hold a wife sponsored KITAS , you can teach from home.

Watch that KITAS thing.
UU6/2011 talks about KITAP holders being allowed to work, not KITAS holders.
However, I'm getting rapidly out of  date as none of this applies to be any more so updates with links to changes would be useful.

Wow, regulations in Indonesia are becoming tougher.

I can still remember in the 80's when anything with Chinese writing was illegal in Indonesia and every so often the government would try to kick out all the foreigners because they somehow believed that foreigner companies could run with only locals only. Seems they haven't changed their thinking all that much.

abdulkhalil :

Wow, regulations in Indonesia are becoming tougher........... Seems they haven't changed their thinking all that much.

Exactly wrong.
Whilst there are many nationalist elements in power, there's also a strong movement to attract investment here.

The nationalist's main point is the erosion and liberalisation of Indonesian society, something they have a valid point about so it's a balancing act between modernisation and wealth creation against the duff side of western life coming here.

The duff side of western life? Are we the elite then?

I think you are wrong. I am guessing you were not here in the 1980's and have not experienced these policies that pretty much have not changed over the years. They are over-protectionism and it has held back this country enormously. Sure, some will say they prefer it this way, yes for their own personal reasons but not for what is good for the country. Some will say let Indonesia belong to only Indonesians.

Talking about Indonesia's smart policies in order to keep out duff westerners from coming here and attracting foreign investment, when corruption at the very high levels is what keeps many investors away, and so many other things is what holds Indonesia back, and what has been holding Indonesia back for decades. It isn't smart policy as you seem to think. It's corruption and a lot of bad decisions.

Don't you think that reducing taxes will bring investment? Having high taxes as we have here will not encourage investment. Making things easier for foreigners will benefit the country.  Making things less tough for foreigners like investing, buying property, less strict on visas and easier for foreigners to work here, Gosh, stop reading all the stuff that the government puts out because most of us know not to believe it.

abdulkhalil :

The duff side of western life? Are we the elite then?

Not at all, just moving away from the drugs and drunks has allowed me to see how duff that side of western life is, but there's also a lot of good to import from western culture and a million things Indonesia could learn from western influence.
That said, western society could learn a lot from Indonesia as well.

Embrace the good, music teachers included, but avoid the bad.

The thread is about a music teacher looking for work over here, something I'd strongly encourage as merging of art forms always produces new and interesting ideas.
Have you seen what the Chinese have done with Swan lake?

I just spent the evening at a jazz event and met all the musicians from all the local bands. Later this month I fly to Tokyo to see my favourite Japanese guitarist perform at his own club as it's his birthday.

Of course the UK sucks otherwise I'd be living there, but since I graduated in 1979 I have only lived there for about three or four years since then because firstly it's boring and secondly who'd want to give up Asia for that.

Drugs, I believe Indonesia like most other countries have pretty big drug problems too.

One of the guys performing this evening is a white American who studied traditional instruments in the US and performed with his girl friend who is a brilliant piano player. He on the other hand is pretty lame. But hats off to him for trying. He sang too.

My wife is in arts and crafts, teaching certificates from Italy, Japan and Greece. I am inundated in arts and crafts here, plus I have a music studio in my home.

Cultural exchange is always good, but it doesn't amount to much. Trade barriers coming down and low taxes and allowing foreigners to work here more easily will benefit the country more, much the same way that the UK will not do when it leaves the EU.

Again, I disagree.
I'm seeing a wonderful movement of art between the UK and Indonesia, something supported by very rich and influential people, many being the same people who make policy here.
That also applies to many other countries who bring the best of their culture to Indonesia, and Indonesia is exporting the best of its art and culture abroad.
Music, moving back to the OP, is just one of many small things that's taking Indonesia up onto the international stage so, IMHO, people such as the OP are doing a wonderful job as cross cultural understanding is essential to Indonesia's future in a more and more open world.

Opening the whole of Indonesia to unrestricted foreign workers is a very bad idea, but making life easy for essential/useful workers and investment is an excellent idea, and one that Jokowi is aiming for.
I'd like to see a lot more quality foreign teachers (especially English teachers) here as that particular section of education is sadly neglected, a major error in my opinion.

Well everyone is entitled to their opinion. I still think you are pushing the party line so to speak as you are committed to this country but maybe that;s the way you see things. Export of art and culture has always been around here way before either of us ever came. It's not the kind of thing that people talk about because it is not a big player when it comes to international commerce. People just come here and import handicrafts back to their owns countries. As far as art is concerned, it is negligible. What you should realise that people here in this forum are not kids or teenagers with no common sense. We are often extremely smart people that when told silly information we know if for the nonsense it is. I know Indonesia is not what you say it is, but let's not debate that.

Obviously opening the whole of Indonesia to unrestricted foreign workers is not just a bad idea but ridiculously stupid. Nobody is suggesting that. Same goes for allowing the relatives of expats to come to live here when they really cannot contribute. Making the required investment for foreigners a billion rupiah is also a bit silly.

There are no "quality English teachers", it's only qualified English teachers (degree, teaching certificate), but age restrictions and 5 years teaching experience is pointless because that doesn't guarantee "quality", just creates limitations on what might otherwise be excellent teachers. For example, do you have 5 years English teaching experience? Do you have a Celta certificate? Are you a quality English teacher? Probably ask that last question to anyone and they will say yes with lots of reasons why they are so excellent.

As for qualified English teachers who are married to an Indonesian spouse, living here with children, but holding a KITAS. Do you think they should be allowed to teach English from home or even in an English teaching school and get paid? I'm talking about the ones with Celta or equivalent, native English speakers. Wouldn't it be smart of this government to allow these people to teach and earn a proper living? In order to stop so many foreigners from coming into Indonesia, why not make use of this potential workforce of qualified English teachers who are already living here under KITAS, married to Indonesians but not allowed to work full time?

Anyway, what we do know is that everyone has an opinion. Nobody can force their opinions on others by shouting louder. Many of us are very smart, know this country extremely well and know what to believe and what not to believe.

I am a real fan of Indonesian music and Indonesian musicians. I always attend the Indonesian Super Guitarist events each year, I go to local jazz events twice a month or whenever they have special events, I know quite a few Indonesian musicians. I jam with the locals. I've even seen Dewa Budjana twice and can't wait for his next tour.

But the local music scene and art scene is not that big internationally. Of course foreigners come here and some buy art. But that happens in every country of the world. It's a minuscule percentage of Indonesian exports but in no way is it considerable or even important except to local artists trying to sell their works.

I am very immersed in our local music scene. I am not talking about sitting around and listening to Black Sabbath or Def Leopard or head banging to Silver Machine. I am talking about local and talented Indonesian musicians playing their own style of music whether it be jazz, traditional or blues. This is what interests me. I meet these people all the time, exchange ideas and techniques and jam together.

Sure, I used to see lots of bands. Zappa and AC/DC at Hammersmith Odeon, Argent, Budgie, Supertramp, Focus, Chris de Burgh, Generation X, Hawkwind, The Pirates (minus Johnny Kidd), Bon Jovi, Joe Satriani and loads more. But you gotta move on and since the early 80's I've become a jazz fanatic. I travel to Japan several times a year (going again this month) to listen to my favourite jazz and fusion musicians at mostly small jazz clubs. Now living in Indonesia I have embraced the local music scene. We are also discussing with local organizers about bringing Japanese jazz musicians to perform in Indonesia (not Java Jazz).

Apart from that I collect Asian art. I have paintings by Ang AH Tee, Leo, Wan Soon Kam, Tay Bak Koi and several other Singaporean artists. You might only have heard of Tak Bak Koi. I met him in 1985 and commissioned him to do a painting for me. These artists use predominantly acrylic, and occasionally mixed media with watercolour except Leo who mostly uses oils. I also have so many Indonesian paintings I have nowhere to put them all.

I am neither an expert in music nor art nor anything else. Only others can judge a person to be an expert. From what I've read here, I think Ubudian is probably an expert on art and antiques and local music. He would be my choice for Indonesian Expert for Culture if ever a position existed. I appreciate the local art and music scene as should everyone. Hope you are into it as much as I am.

Many thanks for the kind words!  Yes, as with you, I do have a great passion for the arts, both applied and visual.  And as you say, Indonesia is rich with wonderful talent in all expressions of art.

I’m good friends with Putu of Kis Band, Bali, so I guess I’m partial to their music. 

This is one of my favorite of his songs…

Three years back I got Putu and his band to be the surprise performers at our annual young people’s association bazaar to raise money for our village temples.  Needless to say, they were a huge hit with the locals of all ages who up until then had only heard his songs on the radio.   

Currently I’m working with the very well known Balinese painter, I Made Djirna with a commission of ten paintings to reflect the signatory and most significant events of his life. 

Djirna just held a highly successful showing of his watercolors in Jakarta… … lings.html

Yes indeed, the art scene in Indonesia is incredibly vibrant and the future looks bright for the continued successes of all Indonesia’s artists and artisans.

Fred :

Again, I disagree.
Music, moving back to the OP, is just one of many small things that's taking Indonesia up onto the international stage so, IMHO, people such as the OP are doing a wonderful job as cross cultural understanding is essential to Indonesia's future in a more and more open world.

No need for fancy speeches, we all know what you are trying to say. Every country has it's own music scene, and all are "taking themselves up onto the international stage"...

I believe music (and sports) should be a part of everyone's life. I played clarinet in my school orchestra as a kid, hated it, but at least I can read music. I also play piano a bit, and have played guitar since the early 1970's. My wife plays piano. My son goes to both guitar and piano lessons and my daughter has piano lessons at a different piano school to my son. We do our bit to "bring Indonesia onto the international stage".

Which is your instrument of choice and to what level have you reached?

Also I wonder if you have you ever attended the Asian Music Festival in Japan? It's on each year and features music from all around Asia. We have been going for the past couple of years because the organizer is a friend and my wife helped with marketing proposals to get sponsorship. They used to send Tulus along with his entourage but fortunately they don't send him anymore.

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