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Kecak Dance, One of The Most Wanted Attractions in Bali.

Updated on July 30, 2015
The view of Uluwatu at sunset
The view of Uluwatu at sunset

What makes it attractive.

One of the most enchanting attractions in Bali is Kecak Dance, a dance that so many visitors don't want to pass up watching it when they visit the paradise island. Besides the choreography, the beauty of Kecak Dance also lies on its story, that's why you are encouraged to know the story behind Kecak Dance before you watch it.

Where to watch :

The best place to watch Kecak Dance in Bali is at Uluwatu. Uluwatu is a magnificent hill at the southern tip of the island which offers a stunning-overlooking-the-sea view. Located at steep, rocky area, there is a special ground at Uluwatu which has specially been designed for Kecak show, this ground overlooks the open sea and the audience can also enjoy a dramatic moment of sunset at this wonderful site while watching the dance.

Kecak is a balinese dance which the story is based on the famous legend of Ramayana. The dance is perfomed by 100 dancers arranged in a circle position and the whole play consists of 5 scenes :

Scene 1:

Rama, Shita and Laksmana are in the forest when a golden deer suddenly shows up. The deer, later Shita finds it as the personification of Rahwana's messenger, tries to attract those three people.

Seeing this cute deer, shita asks her husband Rama to catch it for her. Rama couldn't say no to his wife's request and promises to catch it. Rama tells his brother Laksamana to take care of Shita a moment before he left for the golden deer hunting.

While patiently waiting for her husband, Shita hears groans in pain coming from some distance. She feels familiar with the voice crying for help, she's sure it's her husband's !

Shita is worried about what happens to her husband Rama and asked Laksamana to go after him. Laksmana doesn't believe to what Shita's heard since his common sense says it's impossible for a deer to hurt Rama but Shita's insistent requests pushes him to go for Rama.

Still remembers his older brother order to protect Shita, Laksamana makes a sacred circle first around Shita just before he leaves and asks her not to go beyond the circle.

While she waits inside the sacred circle for the two men to return, comes an old, miserable looking priest asking her for some water. Shita takes a pity on the priest and gives him some water and when she hand in the water she notices the priest turns into giant Rahwana. Everything is too late ! Rahwana grab Shita's hand which comes out of the circle while she is giving the water to him. Rahwana takes her away.

Scene 2:

Shita is in Alengka, Rahwana's kingdom, with Trijata keeps an eye on her. Trijata is always around since Rahwana puts him in charge of monitoring her. Shita spends her gloomy days in Alengka, deep in her heart she hopes that Rama will rescue her soon.

Saving Shita is already in Rama's plan, he sends a white monkey named Hanoman to go to Alengka and to observe the situation there. Hanoman gives Shita a ring to prove that he is King Rama's messenger while Shita asks Hanoman to pass on a rose for her beloved husband as he returns.

After he finishes with his observation mission, Hanoman torches some parts of the Alengka kingdom to give signals to Rahwana that Rama will come to attack.

Scene 3:

In this scene the war against Alengka takes place. Rama, along with the assistance of Tualen and his monkey troops rush in Alengka. Rama doesn't gain success easily since Rahwana's son Megananda and his servant Delem beat Rama and his troops with their wicked power so that they become paralyzed and can't fight back.

Rama says his prayer asking for strength and protection so that he can be saved in the war. His prayer is granted; a Garuda, a giant bird shows up and help Rama release from Megananda's magic.

Scene 4 :

After Rama gains his strength back then he orders The Monkey King Sugriwa to fight against Megananda. In this scene the kecak dancers will seperate into 2 groups : one group represents Megananda's troop and the other group becomes Sugriwa's troop. Sugriwa and his troop manage to beat Megananda.

The dancers will join into one group again when this scene end.

Scene 5 :

This scene shows that Rahwana has been beaten and Rama can get together with his wife again. This meeting is witnessed by Laksamana, Sugriwa and Hanoman.

At the end of the show all supporting dancers will gather on stage and give opportunities to all audience to have their pictures taken with them.

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    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

      Hi, this sounds wonderful, a video of it would be great! when you said it is outside near the sea, it reminded me of a place in England which is similar, in Cornwall west England there is a theatre placed on an outcrop of rock where they perform plays, a great place to see such a spectacle, thanks nell

    • profile image

      images99 7 years ago

      Oh yeah, thats great description, the only difference is the way you spell the names, this will begin in a few days time from now all over again. My last hub is very near to the place where all this happened thousands year before.-Suny

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      It would be wonderful to see a portion of a live performance. And if not...your description was great and it can be left up to the imagination.

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 7 years ago from Indonesia

      I'm not sure if there is available video of this dance, but I let you know if I find it.

      Thank you for reading this hub Peggy W.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      This sounds very operatic and is undoubtedly quite beautiful to view especially in the setting you described. Has anyone made a video of this Kecak Dance? This would be wonderful to see in person. Thanks for the description and the photo at the top of this hub. Rating this up!