Legong Dance in Bali

Legong is a form of Balinese dance. It is a refined dance form characterised by intricate finger actions, sophisticated footwork, and expressive gestures and facial expressions.

Legong most likely originated in the 19th century as royal entertainment. Legend has it that a prince of Sukwati fell sick and had a vivid dream through which two maidens danced to gamelan music. When he recovered, he organized for such dances to be carried out in reality. Others imagine that the Legong originated with the sanghyang dedari, a ceremony involving voluntary possession of two little ladies by beneficent spirits. Legong can be danced at public festivals. Excerpts from Legong dance dramas are placed on for tourists. Ref: Villa Ombak Laut

Legong dancers are all the time ladies who have not but reached puberty. They begin rigorous training at in regards to the age of five. These dancers are regarded highly in the society and usually becomes wives of royal personages or wealthy merchants.

Classical Legong enacts a number of conventional stories. The most common is the story of the King of Lasem from the Malat, a collection of heroic romances. He’s at struggle with another king, the daddy (or brother) of Princess Ranjasari. Lasem wants to marry the lady, however she detests him and tries to run away. Turning into misplaced in the forest, she is captured by Lasem, who imprisons her and goes out for a last assault towards her family. He is attacked by a monstrous raven, which foretells his death.

The dramatics are enacted in elaborate and stylized pantomime. The 2 little actresses are accompanied by a third dancer known as a tjondong or attendant. She units the scene, presents the dancers with their followers and later performs the a part of the raven. Ref: Bali Villas

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