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Jakarta Post

When west meets east

Jakarta   /   Thu, July 5 2012   /  06:36 am

Handsome: Dressed in Balinese traditional costume, members of the JACK Quartet play magnifi cent musicA somber atmosphere descended upon the vast Ardha Chandra amphitheater as the musicians from the Makaradhwaja Ensemble and the JACK Quartet stepped on stage, with heavy expectation and anxiety filling the night air.

On the Balinese side was the Makaradhwaja Ensemble, a performing art troupe based in Singapadu, Gianyar. It was founded by Made Bandem and his wife Suasthi Bandem, both imposing figures in Bali’s cultural landscape. Made Bandem, who currently teaches at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, is an accomplished dancer and renowned ethnomusicologist who has authored several biblical books on Balinese performing arts. His wife is a respected choreographer who with her new creations once breathed fresh air into a local dance scene on the verge of iner...