The Dances of Bali

Baris Tamiang

The Dances of Bali | Sep 22, 2017

It is amazing to find that this little island is the home of so many dances, we can lose count if we tried to include new choreography that seems to arise to the surface every day. The dances in Bali falls into several classification, just like taxonomy of trees or animals. Let’s look at Baris […]

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The Wiranjaya Dance

The Dances of Bali | Aug 22, 2017

Pesta Kesenian Bali, organized by the government of the province, started in 1979 and has taken place each year. The last event, that just finished in early July, charmed thousands of visitors on each day and caused a successful amount of traffic. Apart from performances by the groups of artist from the island, participation from […]

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Rejang Dewa: The Charm of Nymphs

The Dances of Bali | Jul 15, 2017

The charm of Balinese traditional dance has captured the eyes and hearts of so many visitors to the island. There are an assortment of dances and music from Bali that are performed on stage regularly in several areas in the island, such as in Ubud, Batu Bulan, Uluwatu, Tanah Lot and other tourism destinations. However, […]

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The Baris Tumbak Dance

The Dances of Bali | Jun 17, 2017

Tradition, culture, ancestors’ spirits and a strong belief in a supreme God are elements that are respected in various forms through the practices of the Balinese Hindu. Those elements cannot be detached from each other as they complete each other, and the Balinese consistently acknowledge the importance of those elements in their life as well […]

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The Barong And Keris Dance of Batubulan

The Dances of Bali | May 15, 2017

Among the many Barong Dance performances on the island, the Barong and Keris Dance of Batubulan remains unique due to its focus on the Kunti Seraya story, a play that has been performed since the 30’s. An interesting documentation of this play was once written by Walter Spies in his book Dance and Drama In […]

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The Sacred Topeng Sidakarya Dance

The Dances of Bali | Apr 11, 2017

It looks far from beautiful; a mask displaying an old mans face with bucked teeh. Not every mask dancer is worthy of wearing this mask to dance though. It’s not down to the dancing skills, but more about the sacredness and the soul of the mask dance itself. That particular mask dance is called Topeng […]

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Ngurek : A Suicidal Performance

The Dances of Bali | Mar 07, 2017

Those who have watched the Barong and Rangda Dance, Bali’s dance performances, should have seen a group of men attempting to stab their chests with a sharp dagger. This segment ends with a priest who comes on stage, takes the dagger away before sprinkling the man with holy water that was offered to the Gods […]

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Wayang Lemah

The Dances of Bali | Feb 19, 2017

Leather puppet shows, locally called Wayang Kulit, are one of the ancient art performances of Bali. The puppet show is not merely a performance but also a media to spread religious teachings, positive moral value and important information about social and even environmental problems. During Bali’s early years, puppet shows used to be performed only […]

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Topeng Werda Lumaku: The Grandsire’s Dance

The Dances of Bali | Jan 04, 2017

Watching a Topeng Dance (mask dance performance) we might think that the dance is far less complicated than other dances of Bali. But, actually to perform a mask dance, a dancer should go through a long and tough learning process. Not only to master a numbers of dance skills, but also to immerse themselves into […]

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The Nandir Dance is All About Love

The Dances of Bali | Dec 08, 2016

The Nandir Dance originates from Taro Village, just north of Ubud. I hadn’t heard of it until someone mentioned that it was performed as a reconstructed ancient dance at the Bali Arts Festival 2016. It wasn’t until I was working in Taro, documenting an event, when I stumbled upon a group of dancers wearing bright costumes […]

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