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First night: The abduction of Shinta

The venue of the Ramayana epos as it is told through Javanese dance six times a year on four consecutive nights in the open air theatre of Prambanan, with the floodlighted temples in the background. The musicians are getting seated.


At the court of Alengka

The ballet opens with a scene at the court of Rahwana, king of Alengka. Rahwana makes his appearance.
The assembled people together with Rahwana's brother Kumbokarno (below), his general Indrajid and his prime minister Prahasta are paying their respects.
Rahwana's sister Sarpakenaka comes complaining that she has been harassed by a warrior in Dandaka forest, who was accompanied by a beautiful woman.
Rahwana's interest in the woman is roused and he leaves with his servant Kalamarica in order to find her.

In Dandaka forest

Rama Wijaya, crown prince of the kingdom Ayodya is in voluntary exile in Dandaka forest, together with his beautiful wife Shinta and his faithful brother Leksmana (below).
They meet a group of rabbits and a herd of deer and Shinta plays with them.

Rahwana’s ruse

But then a more wonderful, golden deer appears and tempts Shinta. Shinta asks her husband to catch it for her, and the latter obliges leaving Shinta in the care of his brother, Leksmana.
However, the deer really is Kalamarica in disguise, who has been sent by Rahwana.
When Shinta and Leksmana are alone they hear a cry for help, and Shinta who thinks her husband is in danger, urges Leksmana to go to his aid. After some hesitation Leksmana leaves, but not before having drawn a magic circle around Shinta to protect her.
Shinta now being alone, soon Rahwana himself appears and wants to kidnap her. At first he is baffled by the magic circle. Therefore he disguises himself as an old Brahmana priest, and Shinta intending to give him some alms steps out of the circle. Then Rahmana grabs her and takes her away.
Rama and Leksmana return to the spot where they left Shinta. They are at a loss what has happened and Rama reproaches Leksmana.

The eagle Janaya and the monkeys

However the abduction of Shinta has been witnessed by the good eagle Janaya, who now attacks Rahwana in an attempt to rescue her.
Unfortunately he is overcome by Rahwana and mortally wounded.
Rama and Leksmana run into the dying bird and with his last breath Janaya informs them of what has happened.
Janaya dies in their arms and his soul rises to heaven (by way of the stairs).
Then the monkey army with their four leaders appear on the scene: Sugriwa (red), Hanuman (white), Hanila (blue) and the venerable Jembawan (yellow).
Sugriwa begs Rama to aid him recovering his sweetheart Dewi Tara, who has been lured by his - Sugriwa's - elder brother Subali.
In the ensuing fight between Sugriwa and Subali, the latter is shot with an arrow by Rama.
Sugriwa thanks Rama and in return for his aid the monkeys are now ready to assist Rama in his quest to get his wife back.

Posted by theo1006 07:41 Archived in Indonesia Tagged theatre ballet

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