Barong Dance is a Popular Tourist Attraction in Bali
Barong dance is one of the popular Balinese dance that tourist need to see during their holiday in Bali. The most of us might have never heard about one of the largest countries in South East Asian region filled with thousands of beautiful islands named Indonesia, however it is quite hard for us find anyone who is less familiar with Bali, the islands of Gods. This place has become one of the most Bali popular tourist destination in Southeast Asia that offers an array of interesting tourist attractions such as tasty local cuisines, beautiful and breath-taking sightseeing experience and traditional culture. Balinese dances have to be one of the main tourist attractions that have attracted thousands of people every year. Barong dance, just like some other popular traditional Balinese dance like Legong and Kecak dance, has come up with a stunning performance on the stage equipped with a long and interesting story.
Bali, The Island of Attractive Traditional Dances
Bali has so much to offer, an array of beautiful beaches and luxurious hotels are not the only things that invite thousands of travelers from all over the world every year. This place is also home to a number traditional dances that will take you back to the ancient history of Bali gods. Most of the traditional Balinese dances date back to 500 years ago. Every dance is empowered by historical and meaningful stories and poetry which talk mostly about the fight between good and bad, gods and evils. Most of you must have been very familiar with Kecak dance. As one of the most popular traditional dances in this region, most tourists will have the chance to see this in every visit. Mainly, the story behind this particular Balinese dance is about the fight between Sri Rama and Rahwana, the evil god who was trying to take Shinta away from Rama. Other than that, Barong dance show in many locations of this island as well. The traditional dance of Barong is mostly about the lord of the forest and the protector of Balinese villages named Barong. The evil side of this traditional dance is played by Rangda the powerful and evil witch.
Unlike other traditional dances from Bali, Barong dance must be performed very carefully. It is believed that when the spell from Rangda is too strong, the practice of the dance could actually injure the performers. In a very rare case, somebody could die in this dance, therefore, there should not be any weak soldier taking a part in the dance of Barong.
The Story of Barong Dance
The popularity of Barong dance keeps on rising from time to time, it is now the arch rival of the Kecak dance. When you watch the performance of this dance very carefully, you will find the story very interesting. It actually tells us a story between Erlanga and his wicked mother named Rangda. The fight begun as Rangda kept on practicing black magic despite of her husband warning. As she became a widow, she decided to declare war against her own son, Erlangga. When all the evil spirits in the jungle sent by her mother including the leaks and the demons come after him, Erlangga finally got some help from Barong. By the time the evil witch Ranga casted a spell that makes every soldier has no control over their own keris, Barong protected them and turned their body resistant to any kind of sharp weapon. The story ends with the victory of Barong and Rangda had to run away to save her life.
For Balinese people, performing a traditional dance like Barong dance takes plenty of serious preparation. The presence of a pemangku, which is the priest for temple rituals, is very important. The priest is responsible for bringing back the Barong supporters to the real life by sprinkling holy water. It is almost like the safety of the dancers lies on his hand. If come for Bali holiday, one of the best attraction you need to see is Barong dance.