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Dance Periode

towards holy ceremonies. Apart from, its function as property for holy ceremonies, we can also regard the nekara as a holy musical instrument. That is to say, this musical instrument Would be sounded only in religious ceremonies to accompany religious dances that were magical and sacral in nature.

Dances at this time were still very simple, in harmony with the simplicity of the musical instruments. The dances just imitated the motion of nature by movements of the hands and head and by stamping the feet.

In addition to this, we can imagine that the development, the type and the characteristics of dances ini Java, Bali, Sumatra and other regions of Indonesia were all the same during this Period of Primitive Society.

The Period of Feudal Seciety can be subdivided into four shorter periods, viz. Hindu-Indonesian period, Islamic period, tile period of Western Invasion and the period of the Indonesia national Movement.
The cultural growth of the indonesian people obviously improved gradually from the beginning of this Period of Feudal, Society, though the products of culture were restricted to the interests of a special class, the kings and the nobility, and only in connection with the religious life and court entertainment.

During the four periods of feudal society, dancing in Indonesia also underwent development in keeping with the types of society of these periods.


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The Hindu-Indonesian period came into existence after trade between Indonesia and India had brought about cultural contact. No one knows precisely when direct contact was first made, except that it preceded the Christian era, possibly by several centuries.

The assimilation of Indian cultural elements in the Indonesian culture, and also the results of research into Indonesia's material culture at this time indicate that the Indonesian culture was then already well advanced on the path to civilisation. Certainly it was at such a level as made acculturation possible. This fusion of cultures thus took place completely free from any compulsion, because the elements of Indian culture which were assimilated were one which did not conflict with the identity of the Indonesian people that was already established.

It should be noted that, although the term Hindu -Indonesian is used the Buddhist religion also played a major role. No doubt it

was thanks to the acculturation process, that Buddhism was able to exist side by side with the Hindu faith in Indonesia.
The Hindu -Indonesian period begins with the rise of the earliest Hindu-Indonesian kingdoms, so far as is known today, these were the Kutei kingdom in East Kalimantan and the Tarumanegara kingdom in West Java, both of which developed about 400 A.D. After these, historical records show successive emergence of the following
kingdoms: Old Mataram. in Central Java (8 - 10th century), Sriwijaya a Buddhist kingdom in South Sumatra, Kahuripan in East Java (10 -1lth century), Kediri in East Java (11 - 13th century), Singhasari
in East Java (13th century), Majapahit in East Java (13 - 15th century) and Pajajaran in West Java.

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