Sixteen specialists in Indonesian performing arts explore traditional genres of music, dance, and theater, their transmission to younger generations, and their spread and impact around the world. They utilize both frames (contexts) and flows (ecologies) to examine traditions within communities and beyond through the globalization of knowledge and aesthetics. Questions of sustainability are addressed for many traditions challenged by urbanization and the loss of contexts.
The volume covers performing arts in Java, Bali, Sumatra, Borneo, and Lombok, as well as their practice in the United States. Its essays delve into angklung, wayang, gamelan, kebyar, talempong, and other topics relevant to performing arts in Indonesia today. To take full advantage of the digital format, these articles include original videos and audio samples, along with photographs and examples of notated music. Many of these articles are expanded versions of talks given at Performing Indonesia: A Conference and Festival of Music, Dance, and Drama, held at the Smithsonian Institution in 2013, a joint presentation of the Freer and Sackler Galleries and the Embassy of Indonesia.