The atmosphere at the traditional archery skills event in the open field of Sangeh Viilage, Petang, Badung on Sunday (May 28) harkened back to era of the great kingdoms. The archers appeared like soldiers or royal courtiers pitting their supernatural powers against one and other. Dressed in traditional Javanese attire, including kirs and other accessories
The atmosphere at the traditional archery skills event in the open field of Sangeh Viilage, Petang, Badung on Sunday (May 28) harkened back to era of the great kingdoms. The archers appeared like soldiers or royal courtiers pitting their supernatural powers against one and other. Dressed in traditional Javanese attire, including kirs and other accessories or in Balinese black and white checkered apparel like Hindu solidiers they competed like knights to have their arrows hit the bull’s eye.
Concentration and focus led them in turns to hit the target. All were formidable archers from the land of Java and Bali participating in the Gita Raja Art Festival, an event to commemorate the first anniversary of the Pancer Langiit Bali Foundation.
The match took place excitingly with some archers targeting around 100-meter goals divided into in several sessions. “This competition is unique with much charm. This event serves to train the archers in mental and archery skills”, explained an archer from Surakarta named L. Eddy Roostopo, who acted as a judge.
This man familiarly addressed as Popop said archery is great for youngsters. In addition to its atheltic qualities, archery also carries extraodrinary philosophy in terms of learning to focus, concentration and the practice of self-control. If one is introduced to archery early, mental stregth is honed and leads to great acheivements. “Unfortunately, traditional archery has been removed from the national games (PON). Actually it is a national cultural treasures that should be preserved, but instead it has been eliminated”, said this gold medalist of the PON XI.
Archery has much to teach youngsters in terms of self-discipline, he said. “Traditional archery contests are part of efforts to preserve our cultural assets. There used to be a national archery league that competed in the national games. Hopefully, traditional archery will again be included in evens like the provincial games and the national games”, said A.A. Rahma Putra, the founder of Pancer Langiit Bali Foundation.
The Gita Raja Art Festival also included the performnace of several traditional dances such as Teruna Jaya Dance, Jauk Dance as well as single drum performances and puppet gender gamelan show. There was also a modern dance workshop conducted by the Loka Art Dance and an archery workshop by SIPAS Solo, Central Java.
“Through this event, the members of Pancer Langit hope to gain experience in professinal art management. Preserving traditional arts also gives birth to new artistic creations that are rooted in the noble values of tradition” he concluded. (BTN/015)