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Take a Closer Look at Seblang, a Traditional Dance of Banyuwangi

Jumat, 13 Mei 2022 - 01:48 | 24.05k
Take a Closer Look at Seblang, a Traditional Dance of Banyuwangi
Seblang dancer dance with her eyes closed. (Photo: Rizki Alfian/TIMES Indonesia) 
Editor: Khodijah Siti

TIMESINDONESIA, BANYUWANGI – Seems like every area in Indonesia has their very own traditional dance, either those to welcome the guests or those sacred one. Banyuwangi, a local district in East Java also has this kind of sacred traditional dance they called as Seblang.

Seblang was performed by a possessed dancer for 7 days in a row. Back then, this dance was believed to be able to tackle all the bad luck or those plague or epidemic. Ass for now, some locals still believe on it and some just have it for fun as a tourist attraction.

Recently, the local community of Olehsari, Glagah, Banyuwangi, East Java had just hold the dance fro spiritual reason. The ritual and the dance waas started on Friday(6/5/2022) and will be ended 7 days after. Up to now, you could still see the ritual at the designated village.

The possessed dancer will move her body in harmony with the music. What makes it special, she will do the dance with eyes closed. A spiritual leader will accompany the dancer the whole time during her performance.

penari-Seblang-a.jpg

"We are so happy that we finally managed to hold this kind of ritual this year. We've been absence doing this ritual for two years. Though we sometimes do it just for stipulation," the Head of Oleh sari, Joko Mukhlis said.

They said the Seblang dancer was possessed by their ancestor spirit. Calling them to posses the dancer's body also one of their way to honor their ancestors. "Quite interesting. A well preserved tradition, this is what we call as Indonesian Heritage," Sony, a visitor from West Java said.

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