Barong dance is a Bali traditional dance that originates from pre-Hindu culture treasure. The dance describes a battle between kindness (dharma) and falsehood (adharma). Kindness is represented by Barong, which refers to a four-legged dancer, while falsehood is played by Rangda, which refers to a frightening figure with two pointed-fangs in the mouth.
There are several types of Barong dance usually performed during shows in Bali. For instance, Barong Ket, Barong Bangkal (pig), Barong Gajah (elephant), Barong Asu (dog), Barong Bruntuk, and Barong-barongan. Yet, Barong Ket or Barong Keket, which has fairly complete costume and dance, becomes the most frequently-played in front of visitors.
The distinctions of the Barong dance lie in comical and mythological elements that shape performance art. The comedy aspect usually inserted in the middle of the show to stimulate laughter from audiences. While the mythological elements are on the sources of the stories that come from the Pre-Hindu tradition that believes Barong as a mythological animal that protects goodness. This mythological aspect is what makes Barong is considered sacred by the Balinese people.
The Barong dance is often interspersed by Keris dance that sees all of the dancers jab a kris in their respective bodies but without injuring them. This is similar to debus performance in Banten.
The Barong dance can be watched in Garuda Wisnu Kencana tourism area at 10 am and 2 pm; at Pura Dalem Ubud at 7.30 pm, and in some art studios in Batubalan village at 9.30 am local time.
Each ticket for the Barong performance is priced at between IDR100,000 and IDR150,000.