Malaysian Traditional Dance | Cik Siti

Friday, 17 April 2015

Malaysian Traditional Dance

Malaysia is a multiracial country and community that is made up of Malays, Indians, Chinese, IBANs and sumazau. A variety of tradition and culture which can be learnt from this multi-ethnic, especially can be seen from his dance. Dance can be defined as an art of dance movement of the body, legs and hands according to rhythm music played. Dance performed from each race has its own origin and purpose .For example mak yong, zapin dance, gamelan, bhrata natyam, kathak, and the sumazau ngajat.
Dance mak yong is a type of traditional Malay dance. Drama dance Mak Yong is as a form of Malay dance-drama combining elements of ritual, dance and acting, styled vocal music, songs, stories and texts a formal and casual speech. Created for the Royal family entertainment, particularly from the South of Thailand, this dance also combines a romantic drama, dance and by a charming style, about a golden age Sultanate. Fit presented after the villagers to finish rice harvest.
Zapin is a famous dance in the State of Johor. The word zapin is derived from Al-zaffan move away. Historically this dance was at first as entertainment dance in the palace brought from Hadramaut, Yemen South by Arab traders in the 13th century which aims to use the practice of chanting to spread knowledge about the history of Islamic civilization. Now, zapin is still presented in the formal and informal. For example weddings, opening ceremony and so on.


Gamelan dance began at the palaces in The Riau and Lingga were in the 17th century. It was first performed for the first time in public in Pekan Pahang in 1811 in ceremony Tengku Hussain.
According to Tengku Mariam, originally this dance consists of 77 types of Gamelan but today only 33 types of Gamelan only the effect of the absence of instructors of the dance. This dance is performed exclusively by female dancers staged internally or presentation open. Java element can be seen in terms of the art of dance. This dance is very beautiful and is a form of dance that is richest in terms of it's kind in most traditional Malay dance.




Sumazau dance is dance of the kadazan commonly performed during religious events and community. It is presented as a sign of gratitude for the rice harvest, to prevent evil spirits, and to cure diseases. Male and female dancers performed exciting dancewith slow and graceful movements that reflect the birds are flying.


The dragon dance is a traditional dance and performance in Chinese culture. Like lion dance, dragon dance often performed at the festive season. Chinese people always mention the "descendants of the Dragon" as a symbol of ethnic identity. In the mind of the Chinese, the Dragon is a profitable life. The Dragon represents unprecedented strength that can get rid of bad luck and prevent crime. Therefore, since the ancestors of while they celebrate Chinese new year, or lead the process to celebrate a God, even when there are natural disasters or personal disasters occur, they will hold a dragon dance to pray to get a blessing from heaven.

Fan dance is a type of dance requires 9 members, of which 7 women and 2 men. This type of dance shows that Chinese fans have a meaning well in the Chinese community where angel in the past always make fans as a tool needs. In addition, the wind is a tradition of the Chinese community, which the Chinese believe "Fung Shui" which is a belief in the Chinese community at large about a good and bad of a life in their place. Therefore, the dances are played so that this dance can bring benefits or "Fung Shui" to the rest of the members of the community.

Kathak dance is one of the Indian classical dance that originated in northern India.
The word Kathak comes from the Indian word that katha meaning "the art of story-telling". From its original nature which is the expression had nailed down to Hindu gods. Kathak has grown to command castles. During the era of Indian spring mogul in Kathak dance performance has shifted from Temple to spring Mogul castles. The art of Kathak dance has also combined with dance culture of Turkey and Persia. During this era the technique chakkar (swivel) was introduced, believed to be from Sufi Dances from Turkey. This Indian classical dance is a poetry in motion dance. Dramatic and vibrant dance is based on the ancient Indian epic story, and featuring more than 100 dance gestures and body style. In view of this dance is taking a long time to master, there are some dancers children who began training at age as five years.

The Ngajat dance for IBANs is current dance Hari Gawai. Dancers wearing traditionaldances such as the sirat, gagung, or bird shirts and hats decorated with feathers. Gagung is a type of thick shirt made of hard leather animals such as bear skin but not stitched left and his right. This dance is danced by standing above the circle up and down, accompanying dancers will jump with each song played rhythm is in accordance with ritual. Another dance was the dancer will hold wooden shields and swords in the hands of the left in his right hand then danced like the enemy with move his hands to the left and to the right. The tools used in this dance are as big and small, gong, drums, tawak, bebendai, engkurumong and Sapeh, which is a string instrument such as a guitar.

In conclusion, there are many other types of dance community in malaysia. All types of dance has its own history and purpose. As Malaysians, we should get to know the culture of each community in our country. For example knowing about dance culture and other cultures the Malaysian community. Thus indirectly, we are able to support the recommendation of the Prime Minister of a country.


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