Do you know this picture?
I’m sure only tourists who have ever been in Indonesia or live in Indonesia that know about this picture. This picture above is puppet, Indonesians called it Wayang. Wayang is a popular performing art from Indonesia. In 2003, UNESCO determines Wayang as masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage humanity.
In Hindu era in Indonesia, Wayang was used as the media to spread Hindu faith. As well as in Muslim era, Wayang was very useful media in spreading Muslim faith in Indonesia. It has been part of Indonesia’s history.
In Indonesia, you can see many kinds of Wayang performances, such as: leather puppet (Wayang Kulit) or human puppet (Wayang Orang). If you visit Jogja, I suggest you to see this popular performing art, especially Wayang Kulit Gagrag Jogjakarta (Jogjakarta’s style leather puppet).
Wayang Kulit Gagrag Jogjakarta is leather puppet special performance from Jogjakarta that has special form, inlay, and sunggingan (painting) morphologically. This performance has three elements: lakon wayang (serving story way and its mean), catur (narration and conversation), karawitan (gendhing, sulukan and state properties).
The figures in this performance are Antasena, Wisanggeni and Punokawan. In the puppet performance, Antasena is Bimasena’ son; he is one of pandawa (hero). Wisanggeni is Arjuna’s son; he is strong, wise and great person. He is also a hero in the story. Punakawan group completes the performance. Punokawan group usually represents different people characters.
I believe Wayang Kulit Gagrag Jogjakarta is a special performance for tourists, both domestic and abroad tourists. Of course, you can see it only in Indonesia, especially in Jogjakarta.
PS: If you are interested in seeing these traditional performances you can visit Keraton Jogjakarta (Jogjakarta Palace) or visit Prambanan temple to see Sendatari Ramayana.