Bali Life

The many faces of Balinese Mask Dance

Tari Topeng or translates as Mask Dance is commonly found in all regions across Indonesia, including the island of Bali. The Mask Dance in Bali is a unique one and initially performed as part of a religious Balinese Hindu ritual, although over time it turns into a spectacle for entertainment purposes. 

The Philosophy:
It is believed that the use of masks is to pay respect to the ancestors, and the dancers are regarded as interpreters of the gods. Topeng dance is a solo perfomance and can only be carried-out by men. It opens with a series of non-speaking masked characters while bringing a variety of stories. 

The mask dance will usually perform in the order of Topeng Kras (a dashing and authoritarian character); Topeng Tua (depiction of an old man); and Topeng Manis (a refined hero with sweet character). The Topeng Tua performer will usually try to draw out the audience to participate. Today, you will find the dance involving some sort of humour as a way to entertain the audience. 

If you’re planning on staying at Padma Resort Legian, then you’re in luck, since you’ll be able to enjoy this unique tradition up close and personal at Donbiu Restaurant’s Cultural Buffet Dinner.

What other Bali cultural wander would you like to see in our blog? 

For further information and reservation of our Cultural Buffet Dinner, please contact [email protected].

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