Legong Dance in Bali

Traditional Balinese Dance Performance

The Legong Dance (or just ‘Legong’ for short) is one of Bali’s most visually alluring royal court performances. The dance is considered one of the island’s most revered classical pieces, known for its physically demanding postures and fast-paced movements which require a significant level of flexibility among its generally young female performers. Choreographed to a set pattern with the finest detail, the dance has been well-preserved through generations.

Locals refer to the Legong Dance by its complete designation - ‘Legong Kraton’ - which loosely translates as the ‘dance of the royal palace’. It used to only be shown within closed palace walls in front of the royal family. Through the change of times, you can watch it performed at various open stages and shows throughout the island, such as at the Puri Saren Royal Palace, a palatial landmark in Ubud Central, which is open to the public.

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Back in the day, any young girl assigned the task of learning the dance – and eventually performing it in the palace – would gain high honour. The Legong depicts angels divinely dancing in the heavens, and is visually distinctive through the performers’ iconic costumes, which comprise a golden floral headdress of considerable size and weight, along with complete regalia from shoulders to feet. Trained dancers carry out movements effortlessly, despite the bulk of their outfits.

The classical performance showcases the agility of the dancers, who move dynamically to a live accompaniment of a gamelan orchestra. Today, there are several artistic variations of the Legong Dance, found throughout the different regions in Bali, such as in the village of Saba and Bedulu in the Gianyar regency, and Kelandis in the central Bali highlands. Below are some popular places with open stages, showing the dance for visitors regularly.

Where to Watch the Legong Dance in Bali

Puri Saren Royal Palace

  • Location: Jalan Raya Ubud, Ubud
  • Tel: +62 (0)361 975 057
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Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA), Ubud

  • Location: Jalan Raya Pengosekan, Ubud
  • Tel: +62(0)361 976 659
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Puri Agung Peliatan Royal Palace, Ubud

  • Location: Jalan Cok Gede Rai, Peliatan, Ubud
  • Tel: +62 (0)812 3651 0900
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Pura Saraswati Temple, Ubud

  • Location: Jalan Raya Ubud, Ubud
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