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West // West Oahu News
Nicole Kato

LCC Theatre’s Cultural Showcase Takes Audiences To ‘Bali’

Leeward Community College Theatre presents A Night in Bali at 8 p.m. March 23, featuring the work of Gamelan Segara Madu.

“Actually, the art of Bali already is in Hawaii,” explained theater manager Joe Patti. “UH-Manoa has had a gamelan ensemble that plays both the Japanese and Balinese styles for many years.”

The interactive performance showcases Bali’s rich cultural heritage, including traditional temple performances, dance and traditional puppetry accompanied by the percussive music of a gamelan ensemble.

“I was interested in trying out some of the interactivity, which is a hallmark of performances in Bali,” Patti explained. “Unlike here in the U.S., people will get up and move closer to the performance in Bali. They will move around behind the musicians and the puppet masters to see how the performance is accomplished.

“I think too much of that would be distracting to our audiences, who aren’t used to that sort of activity and would like to focus on discovering the performance, but we are going to try to replicate it to a small degree.”

A major characteristic of Bali performances is the practice of audiences talking among themselves, getting up to walk around to examine the performance technique and cheering on the performers.

There will be seating on the stage for audience members who wish to see the show up close, and during intermission some performers will stay seated on stage to answer questions from the audience.

In Balinese gamelan shows, dozens of musicians play gongs and bells of cast bronze. The musician must strike and mute the instrument in order to keep the volume under control.

Along with the gamelan performance, guest dancer Casey Lee-Sims and guest artist I Made Moja will make an appearance. I Made Moja is an accomplished painter, illustrator, dancer, puppet maker and shadow-play artist.

A Night in Bali also is a farewell concert for ensemble directors I Made Wadana and Anna Reynolds, who will be returning to Bali to conduct research.

According to Patti, this is a great opportunity to discover that Bali is more than just a great vacation destination.

Tickets cost $30 for adults, $25 for students, seniors and military, $23 for UH faculty, staff and students, and $15 for children under 12.

A $5 discount is offered for advance purchases, which are available by calling the LCC box office at 455-0385 or going online at Etickethawaii.com or LCCTheatre.hawaii.edu.

Leeward Theatre is located at 96-045 Ala Ike St. in Pearl City.

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