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Jakarta Post

‘Rara J’: Traditional folktale gets musical makeover for the internet generation

  • Josa Lukman


Jakarta   /   Thu, August 13 2020   /  01:00 am
A modern take: Daniel Ongko (left) portrays Bandung and Neala Vangelin as Rara in Rara J, a new musical which adapts the traditional Roro Jonggrang folklore for the internet generation.(Image Dynamics/-)

Musical Rara J is a tale of old infused with modern influences, cranked up to eleven with tongue firmly in cheek. What do you do when you want to present a traditional folktale familiar to most Indonesians, but at the same time highlight it in a way that is relevant to today’s technology-driven society? Enter Rara J, Indonesia Kaya’s latest musical in its #MusikalDiRumahAja (#MusicalAtHome) series. Combining both theater and film, Rara J is directed by theater directors Chriskevin Adefrid and Venytha Yoshiantini in collaboration with film director Naya Anindita. The musical numbers were composed by Ivan Tangkulung, who also worked with Titien Wattimena on the script. Like its name may imply, the musical is adapted from the famous Javanese folktale Rara Jonggrang, which explains the origin myth of Prambanan Temple situated on the borde...