Devdan Show-Treasure of the Archipelago is a must-see performance for the whole family, and it’s one of the top things to do in Bali!
You know it’s a great show when you spend the first 15 minutes keeping mental notes on your favorite parts, but then have to give up because it just keeps getting better and better!
We decided to do the Devdan Show-Treasure of the Archipelago early during our recent trip to Bali to start our exotic adventure with the right tone. Knowing next to nothing about Bali or Indonesia when we arrived, there were two impressions that stood out right away:
- First, the sheer diversity of the cultural traditions of Indonesia, spanning from Borneo, Java, and Bali to Papua and a few more islands in between.
- Second, the simple, elegant beauty of the various traditions of dance and music linking Indonesians to their cultural heritage.
Some of our favorite dances were the Water Dance, Rain Dance, Fire Dance, and Allah Dance.
As a show, Devdan is well choreographed, orchestrated, and executed, but, more importantly for a 90-minute show, it was paced perfectly. The individual dance segments lasted 3-5 minutes– long enough to get drawn in to their unique rhythms and vibrant costumes but short enough to not lose excitement before the next dance came to sweep you away. This meant there were no lulls from over-long or repetitive segments. Even our normally fidgety 3-year-old stayed on the edge of his seat the whole time.
The rhythm of the dances elevated and lifted the audience during its build to the energetic finale. There was even a bit of audience participation to keep things fresh along with timely comic relief (in the form of monkeys… which anyone who has been to Bali knows is just perfect!)
The Devdan Show FinaleThe (literally) soaring aerial Kalimantan duet, and the dramatic good versus evil tensions of the Kecak Fire dance ended up being some of our favorites. The theater also had monitors at the bottom of the stage and it was helpful to read the names and a brief explanation of each dance as the show went along. We walked away feeling entertained and ready to see more and explore in person the beautiful legacy of Indonesia’s traditions, and of the other traditions to be seen in various parts of Bali. We will definitely see the show again next time we are in Bali (it’s that good!) and highly recommend it to anyone traveling in the area.
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