On the 30th of November 2016, I went out with This is My Indonesia volunteer to an Indonesian Dance Festival in Malang. It was more of a dancing competition to see which province in Indonesia had the best traditional dance. Because every one of 34 provinces in Indonesia could have more than one traditional dance. The dance can range from decades to centuries of years old. Each province in Indonesia has their own signature move incorporated into their traditional dance.
Luka from Bogor – story about a princess being sacrificed for “Sumpah Palapa”
In Gayo Lues, a regency well known for its traditional Saman dance (dance of thousand hands). It is known for its fast pace rhythm and common harmony between dancers. It is an act you would want to see to embrace and know more about the Indonesian culture.
The Gong used in the Indonesian Dance Festival
What makes Indonesian dance different to western dance is through the musical instruments. Nearly all traditional Indonesian dance uses only percussion instruments. Not only their instruments that is different, but their rhythm is also different. Its because the rhythm is going from slow to fast paced and then back to slow again in an unpredictable but beautiful manner.
Overall it was a great dance festival to attend since it shows a lot about the Indonesian culture of each province through their dance.
Johnny Vuong – Australia
This Is My Indonesia Exchange Participant