Nowela, The Singer With a Unique Voice from Wamena

Her name has become the center of attention after her golden voice soared each week in 2014 through the television and in to the living room of Indonesian families. Because of how beautiful it is, even Ahmad Dhani—one of the judges in that talent show—called his voice the uranium voice. She became more famous when she won Indonesian Idol. The curly haired singer is a Papuan native.


Nowela Elizabeth Auparay
Nowela competing in Indonesian Idol 2014 (Photo courtesy of


Her name is Nowela elizabeth Auparay. The singer who is famous after she won first place in a singing competition in one of a private TV. She was born in Wamena, 19 December 1987. Nowela has a Papuan blood from his father and a Bataknese blood from her mother. This is a perfect blend of gene pool for her golden voice. So what is her story until Nowela can become a famous singer?

Although she was born in Papua, she spent her school years in Java. Nowela was enlisted as an elementary student of SD Lab Salatiga (1993-1999), and finished her Highschool in SMU Negeri 1 Sidoarjo (2002-2005). She was also enlisted as an undergraduate of Airlangga University, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, but did not finish it.

Knowing that she has a beautiful voice, Nowela carried on her life as a cafe singer in Purwokerto for six years. With a momentous trip, her journey was led to Indonesian Idol bus audition in Purwokerto. With ease, she passed and flew to Jakarta. In Jakarta, Nowela’s name became famous. She often received compliments from the judges. Her unique voice, a blend between Bataknese voice and Papuan accent makes her different from other singers.

Nowela becomes a living proof that a Papuan born can have the potential to compete with many competitors in a very prestigious event. Papua, as we know all these time, is not far from news of underdevelopment and the lack of education access. Whereas many talented artists actually come from Papua.

As well as Nowela, there are other talented Papuan artists who have not only won singing competitions and successfully built their career in the music industry, but some of them also have dedicated themselves to promote West Papua and preserve its cultures and arts.

“My victory in Indonesian idol 2014  is a proof that the Papuan people can become a champion in a national singing competition,” said Nowela in a press conference of a pre-concert (a closing performance of Indonesian Independence Day Festival in 17 August, 2014), in Biak, Monday, as quoted from Antara. She also said that so far, the Papuan people’s singing talent have not been getting serious attention, hence their potentials are unfortunately still burried in the land of Papua.


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