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Kamis, 15 Maret 2012

Sisingaan, the traditional dance from Subang-West Java


One of the tourism attraction from West Java that I really love is Sisingaan. Sisingaan or "fake lion" is the unique traditional performance from Subang, West Java (about 75km from Bandung, the capital city of West Java to the north).

This performance used to be a story, a symbolization of the Indonesian people power when Dutch invasion in 1940's. It's a dance with traditional music, eight people lifting two fake lions (dolls) with young boys on top of them. The fake lions are the symbol of invaders and eight people who lifting the lions are the symbol of people of Indonesia. The lions are the Royal Coat of Arms of England, young boys riding fake lions are the symbol of England which came to Indonesia using their Dutch relationship.

And there was a military agreement in Kalijati, Subang. An agreement between Dutch and Japan in 1942 that led Indonesia to be Japan's governance. Perhaps this occasion had inspired people of Indonesia at that time to create a unique performance for historical symbolization.

These days, people of Subang have their own meaning for Sisingaan:
1. They believe that they have a heart of art.
2. A theatrical performance.
3. A commercial opportunity.
4. Universal meaning, many countries have pick a lion as their symbol.
5. Spiritual meaning.

A boy in Islam should have circumcision, therefore in order to cheer up that boy, their parent held a Sisingaan as a performance. Usually, it will performed several days after the boy go circumcision (so the boy is fit already and can enjoy the show). The boy will ride the fake lion and four strong people will dancing and lift him up. It's an energetic performance and I have a plan to hold this event when my boy got circumcision next several years :).

Want to see now...?
Come to Subang, specially when Subang hold an event to celebrate their anniversary (April 12). From Jakarta you can use Cipularang highway (Bandung direction), exit at Sadang Gate than continue driving to Subang. From Bandung you can drive to the north via Lembang and Tangkuban Perahu area.

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