Monday, December 24, 2012

Jaran Kepang aka Jathilan: Traditional Dance from Java

Several days ago I saw Jaran Kepang aka Kuda Lumping aka Jathilan aka Jaranan. Hehehehhh.... There are so many terma about this traditional dance from Java. Recently, Jaran Kepang or Kuda Lumping begins rarely performing in any events. It commonly is performed in a special moment. Therefore, not all children know about this traditional dance. Based on this situation, it is needed to make this dance known by all young generation in order that it can be conserved until next time. 
Jaran kepang itself has unique and magic characteristics.

The image above I captures in Jaran Kepang Performance in Kebun Bibit Manyar, Surabaya (Monday, December 9th, 2012).
Kuda Lumping (literally flat horse; also known as Jaran Kepang in Javanese) is a traditional Javanese dance depicting a group of horsemen. Dancers "ride" horses made from woven bamboo and decorated with colorful paints and cloth. Generally, the dance portrays troops riding horses, but another type of Kuda Lumping performance also incorporates trances and magic tricks. When the "possessed" dancer is performing the dance in trance conditions, he can display unusual abilities, such as eating glass and resistance to the effects of whipping or hot coals. Although the dance is native to Java, Indonesia, it also performed by Javanese communities in Suriname, Malaysia and Singapore. The origin of Kuda Lumping is uncertain. Two main hypotheses have been proposed. The first suggests that Kuda Lumping may have arisen out of Diponegoro's war against the Dutch colonial forces, as a ritual reenactment of battles. The second argues that it is based on Mataram-era troops riding against the Dutch. Kuda Lumping is known under different names in different areas. While Kuda Lumping is the most common name in West Java, in Central Java it is known as Jaran Kepang; in Bali, it is known as Sang Hyang Jaran. In Bali Sanghyang dance refer to the type of dance involving trance by spirit identified as hyang (Source: Wikipedia)


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