Written by @hyas_tina and @irmarizkiani 🙂
Assigned by Puspa Safitrie 😀
Merak dance is a traditional dance which comes from Java, Indonesia. It usually performs in West Java and East Java. Merak dance is a new creation dance from ‘Pasundan’ or Sundanese, West Java. Firstly, it was created by Raden Tjeptjep Somantri in 1950. However, in 1965, this dance re-introduced with the new motions by Irawati Urban, the dancing art lover which comes from Bandung, West Java.
Actually, this dance tells about the beauty of male peacock which aim to attract the female peacock, but many people assume that it tells about the life and cheerfulness of female peacock. The male peacock will show its beauty and colorful long fur tail. That act is like a grace dance to show its best beauty. The male peacock believes that the female peacock will amaze and they will continue to their sacral wedding ceremony. Every movements of Merak dance is full of cheerfulness and happiness, so this dance always used as the gift dancing for the visitors or to welcome the groom to the altar in the wedding ceremony.
In a performance, generally Merak dance is performed by one or several woman dancers. They wear the fully colored costume, such as red, yellow, and green. Actually, those colors describe the beauty of peacock itself. Its fully colored costume is decorated with the dominant characteristic that is the fully pa-yet wings which can be movable by its dancers gracefully which can make this dance more beautiful, and also the crown named ‘singer’ which will sway when its dancers make their head motion. To make it more interesting, they also wear the matching colored scarf. The scarf is tidied up on the Merak dancers waist. It looks like a pair of the peacock wing.
Following with the gamelan sunda music tools, Merak dance performance starts. The slowly movement from the dancers becomes the special characteristic of it. From beginning until ending, its dancers do the movements which describe the gracefully, the beautifully and the agility of the peacock itself. Based on its story, all of its movements describe a male peacock which is trying to attract the female peacock.
In every events, this dance usually performs especially for welcoming the ‘tamu agung’ or to introduce the Indonesian culture especially the Sundanese culture to the international class. Merak dance is also performed in the Sundanese wedding ceremony, this dance always be the welcoming dance of the groom who will come to the altar.
From many sources