2015, Performance Art, TV Screen
By MAZLAN MUHAMMAD, St Gabriel Secondary School
My journey and interest into Balinese culture started in 2003 while studying in Australia. There, I picked up traditional Gamelan music and danced the Topeng [mask] routines during the weekends, as well as at folk festivals, before returning home in 2005 to play with Gamelan Asmaradana.
My deep passion in Topeng dances has led me to choreograph a flashback concept of the Topeng Tua dance routine. In this dance, an Old Warrior reminisces his battlefield years when he was a general of his regiment – always ready and always winning. As he triumphs in his lingering thoughts, the Old Warrior strikes again and again – his eyes darting sharply at his enemies. In every move he makes, not a single moment he misses his target – although he has forever lost his majestic headgear. Yet, his willpower amidst his much gathered strength bravely marches on – only this time, in a very different motion.
As he shivers in his panting heartbeats, he carefully takes his settling steps – still thinking far and remembering his victorious past. This time, no bloodshed. This time, in peace.