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Balinese and JavaneseDance

Of Hindu origin, in which dance signifies creation, dance traveled to Indonesia where it found its own means of expression.
The Balinese and Javanese dances that we know today have existed for centuries. The first evidence of these dances can be seen in the bas-reliefs on the Borobudur Temple, in central Java, constructed in the 8th century A.D.
Balinese dance is tightly connected to religion. The peak is situated somewhere around the 16th century during the era of the great Hindu kingdoms. During the 1920's and 1930's Balinese dance found a new élan. New dances, which were shorter and used in non-religious occasions, were created from the old forms.
Javanese dance was originaly a court dance, performed during ceremonies in the court. Starting at the beginning of this century and especially during the last few decades many new dances have been created from more modern inspiration.
This is a Balinese dance of welcome. Perfomed in Bali at the beginning of an artistic ceremony. It permits the temple dancers to welcome the visiters and to pay them homage with a rain of flower petals.
This is a Balinese dance that evokes the love between two bumblebees.This dance is one of the last creations of the celebrated dance teacher, I Mario, in the 1950's.

This Balinese dance expresses the character of a young man who is proud and sure of himself, in the prime of his life. "Taruna" means "young man" and "Jaya" means "victorious". But his mood changes quickly, sometimes he is smiling and sometimes angry or provocitive. This dance is from Northern Bali known for its fast and dynamic music.

This is a new Balinese dance creation which represents young herons with their mother in the middle of a pond flying here and there looking for food.

This is a relatively recent creation by a renowned central Javanese choreographer,Bagong Kusiardjo, whose compositions are inspired by the basic gestures and expressions of Balinese and Javanese dance. This dance represents a woman warrior armed with a bow and arrow."Wira" means "warrior" and "Pertiwi" means "homeland".


Jaipongan is a danse style of working-class origins from the Sunda region in west Java. It integrates martial art movements but in a "hidden" way. The music and singing have Arabic infuences.Originally this dance wae performed in the villages for weddings. A female dancer would improvise and then invite the guests to dance.The Jaipongan has again become very popular and is performed for diverse occasions.


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