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  Barong Landung

Barong Landung is a type of magically protective effigy. It's found in many villages of the Denpasar area in preference to Barong Ket and to the other types of animal Barong.

Landung means 'tall', and indeed the 10-foot figures tower over their bearers and attendants. These effigies have human faces and features. Five of them comprise a complete set : Jero Gede (the big man), Jero Luh (his wife), and their three children.

The Luh has Chinese features and yellow skin while her husband has a black complexion, long hair and fangs. He is said to represent a Dravidian from ancient India. The children are of somewhat shorter height and wear masks which remind the viewer of those used in telek.

Barong Landung, like the other barong types, is a possession of the village. The dancers are drawn from the strongest young men, who alone can handle the size and weight of the giant figures, each of which is carried and operated by a single performer.

During most of the year Jero Luh, Jero Gede and their children remain in the home banjar (ward association hall) but at Galungan time, they appear on the highways of the Denpasar area in the evenings.

At this time groups with a set of Barong Landung figures walk from village to village, dancing and singing to the accompaniment of the gamelan batel. When the procession reaches the bale banjar of the village to be visited, a small circle of spectators gathers around the milling figures.

There a simple domestic drama in the Balinese language is enacted in song and speech. The subject is drawn from daily life. The play contains jokes and comic business, along with bits of homely good advice from parents to children.

The husband and wife quarrel and argue for a short time, but there is no fighting sequence. The little play concludes with songs by the principal characters, and the procession move along to the next village.

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