Kecak Dance

Balinese Kecak Dance

Kecak or Ketjak is one of Balinese Dances and music drama. This dance was first performed in 1930s and primarily performed by men. Kecak dance is mostly related about the drama musical of Ramayana Monkey Chant which performed by a circle of 150 or more performers.

Kecak dance is such an old traditional dance, but now it has been modified into some roles or models in the same concept and culture based on the Bali’s tourism demand. Since 1970s, the Kecak Dance continued to experience some changes, especially in terms of story and staging techniques.

The name “Kecak” is comes from the words “cak cak cak” that shouted by the dancers during the show. Moreover, the sound “cak cak cak” is also become the background music of this dance. This Kecak dance become a unique presentation for it plays by a group of men, when all of them are sitting in line or circle sounding a special rhythm while shouting a capella “cak cak cak” and raising their hands up high.

Kecak dance is described about rows of monkeys helping the Prince Rama against Ravana in the Ramayana epic. Kecak originates from Sanghyang ritual, which is a tradition where the dancers are in trance as communicating to God or ancestral souls, conveying their expectations to the public. Kecak Dance does not use any musical instruments, but only uses a set of chimes on feet of the dancers playing the characters of Ramayana. Meanwhile, the dancers sit in the circle wearing a checkered cloth wrapped around their waists, which typical Balinese theme.

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