Rampak Yakso Dance of Dieng Kulon Village, Banjarnegara
Dieng Plateau is the charm of Banjarnegara and Wonosobo District. Surrounded by mountains, lakes, craters, and other nature attractions, the site becomes tourists’ favorite place when visiting Central Java Province. There is another type of attraction, though. Visitors can enjoy some beautiful local dances too, especially Rampak Yakso. It is the signature performance of Dieng Kulon Village, showing a colossal entertainment to both locals and foreigners. The dance is performed either by teenagers or adults, regardless of the profession. The dance tells the story about the war between Gatotkaca and Kolo Pracono in Njuggkring Seloko (heaven).
About Rampak Yakso Dance
The dancers wear flashy attire, featuring red and black color. They even wear a wig, put some makeup, and apply false teeth that show the characteristics of buto (evil giants). When walking, the sound of small bells is heard, coming from their wrist accessory. The other dancers may wear different attire, though. Instead of wearing buto attire, they wear a costume of a white monkey hero called Hanuman. Another costume definitely symbolizes the main hero of the story, which is Gatotkaca. The one who wears such attire must have a good body shape, though.
Enjoying Rampak Yakso Dance
Usually, the dance is held during Dieng Culture Festival, but the locals also conduct in in regular days. Being called as a colossal performance, the dance is performed by several men wearing different costumes mentioned before. Apart from telling the story of the war between Gatotkaca and Kolo Pracono, the dance becomes a festive event among the locals in order to welcome the harvest session. For tourists, it is better to talk to a tour agent prior to attending the event. This way, they can avoid disappointment due to lacking information and schedule.
The fact is that Rampak Yakso Dance is performed by only men. It represents a war between the good and evil, actually. No wonder, the movements are a little bit rough and intimidating. The coolest dancer is the one that wears Gatotkaca attire. He becomes the center of attention as well. Those who wear Hanoman attire move more swiftly than the others because their role is to describe the activeness of that white monkey during the war. What about Buto? Those wearing such attire might show their scary appearance while moving in the middle of the street.
Rampak Yakso Dance also features accompaniment, especially gamelan. The sound of the bells worn by Buto dancers is also heard during the performance. All dancers move slowly in the street and head to Arjuna Temple. It is where they conduct their final performance before other events start, especially the sanctification ritual of dreadlocks. Tourists must never forget to carry a camera when enjoying the performance! It is a must.
- Prau Mountain
- Balekambang Lake
- Gasiran Aswotomo
- Kailasa Museum
- Arjuna Temple
How to Get There
Most of the time, Rampak Yakso Dance is performed in Dieng Kulon Village and its nearby area. From Wonosobo City, travelers can ride a bus and take Dieng Raya Street to that location. Make sure to come on the right schedule, though. Otherwise, they won’t be able to enjoy the dance because no one performs it.
Where to Stay
- Puspa Indah Homestay
- Gunung Mas Hotel
- Dieng’s King Inn