A Stunning Tandak Dance of Riau Archipelago Province
Riau Archipelago is considered a new province. However, it has numerous interesting things and culture. For instance, there is Tandak Dance. This stunning traditional entertainment has attracted many tourists these days. Actually, it belongs to both Riau and Riau Archipelago Province. Usually, the locals perform it during special events. The dancer can be either a man or woman. The thing is dancers must wear Malayan traditional clothes and apply the moves properly. During the performance, there is accompaniment too. Due to its uniqueness, many tourists come to Riau Archipelago to witness the dance directly.
The History of Tandak Dance
Tandak is considered an old dance. It has been in Riau Archipelago for decades. In the past, local people use the dance to preserve hospitality. Young people gathered and enjoyed the dance wholeheartedly. Some people even found their soul mate after witnessing such dance! Today, it becomes a common attraction for both locals and tourists. Fortunately, the dance remains popular. There is an annual performance, as well. Usually, it is done between July and October. The most common event is during the harvest moon.
More about Tandak Dance
As mentioned before, the purpose is to retain hospitality of the locals. The dance helps them to get closer to each other. Apart from that, it also becomes a source of entertainment and a form of gratitude. The dancers usually perform at night. There is a leader, though. The person who leads the dance is called “Kepala Ngejang”. This culture remains, but it fades over time. Due to this reason, people start performing it as the form of entertainment. That means tourists have a better chance to witness such dance openly.
Commonly, the dancers consist of two males and females. That means the performers consist of 4 people. Still, it can be more than that. In terms of movements, Tandak Dance is quite dynamic. It involves both hands and feet. The dancers move swiftly and beautifully. Sometimes, you can see some “pencak silat” moves. The duration isn’t quite long, though. When it is about the music, you may hear a traditional Malayan melody. Somehow, it gives you a peaceful feeling. Not to mention the dance is mesmerizing.
Apart from the dancers, there are some musicians. They play several traditional instruments such as kordeon and tambourine. The thing is the moves are matched to the sounds of the instruments. Sometimes, verses and lyrics are included. What about the costumes? The dancers wear traditional clothes. For men, a cap is a must. For women, they wear a Kabaya. They also wear some accessories like necklaces, bracelets, and head fixtures. Overall, the dancers appear quite attractive!
Where to Enjoy Tandak Dance
If you want to enjoy Tandak Dance directly, you should head to Riau Archipelago. Some villages perform it occasionally. You can talk to your tour agency first.
By Boat: From Jakarta, you can use a ferry. Your destination is Kijang Port. Next, you can use a taxi or bus to visit some villages in Riau Archipelago.
By Bus: The main bus terminal in Riau Archipelago is Sai Carang. You can find many buses with different routes, there. Make sure to come between July and October, though.
By Airplane: From your location, head to Raja Haji Fisabilillah Airport. Once you get there, you can explore the province using a local public transportation.