The Gambuh

The Gambuh is the oldest classical dance in Bali, probably introduced at the time of the Majapahit culture. At a hauntingly slow tempo, the gambuh dance drama tells episodes from the story of Panji’s search for his beloved in the kingdoms of Eastern Java. Now retained in only a few villages (notably Batuan and Pedungan), the gambuh combines the best of both female and male Balinese dancing. An unusual feature is the use of long bamboo flutes instead of the complete set of gamelan and gongs.