Sekaten as known as Night Market Celebration is a well-preserved traditional ceremony in Yogyakarta. The ceremony is held annually during the seven days prior to Prophet Mohammad SAW birthday at North Alun-Alun Square. In the event of Sekaten, a variety of popular entertainment and games are performed every night, the best local’s culinary are offered as well as a wide variety of traditional merchandises are available at various kiosks. Sekaten comes from the word ‘syahadatain’ from the Islamic Creed which has sacred meanings for Moslems.
Time: Annual in Every Fifth Day of Maulud Month
Venue: Alun-Alun Square North – Near Sultan Palace
Category: Night Market and Traditional Ceremony
During the four nights of each full moon of the dry season (May through October), local dancers, artists and musicians reenact the Ramayana stories at an open amphitheater behind Prambanan Temple. This cultural event has managed to combine the diversity of Javanese arts in the form of dance, drama and music in one stage. The Ramayana stories are presented in four stages: Sinta’s abduction, Anoman’s mission to Alengka, the death of Rahwana and the final happy reunion of Rama and Sinta.
Time: 7.30pm – 9.30pm
Venue: Indoor Theater Taman Wisata Candi Prambanan
Phone: +62 274 496408
Category: Cultural Performance, Sendratari (Dance, Drama and Music)
Ticketing: IDR 100,000 – IDR 300,000
Wayang kulit (leather puppet) is a magnificent artwork of Javanese art performance that has received acknowledgment from UNESCO. A dalang (wayang player) plays puppet made from buffalo´s leather behind a white screen. Hence, the audience can only see the shadow. That is exactly the reason why it is called ‘wayang’ meaning shadow in English. The attractive parts of the show lies on the dynamic movement of dalang at playing different roles of wayang, his skill to change voices for every character, his jokes and even his singing.
Time: Every Night, 8.00pm – 10.00pm
Venue: Museum Sonobudoyo
Phone: +62 274 418330
Category: Cultural Performance
Ticketing: IDR 20,000
Ketoprak is a traditional Javanese theater performance. Just like human puppet show, Ketoprak plays a drama with Javanese compositions and gamelan music accompaniment. The critical difference lies on its source of the story where it is not derived from Mahabarata or Ramayana but it is derived from other legends or stories.
Time: Every 1st Sunday Night in a Month, 8.00pm – 12.00pm
Venue: Auditorium RRI (Radio Republik Indonesia)
Phone: +62 274 512783
Category: Art Performance, Theater
Ticketing: IDR 5,000
Gamelan is the main element of the Indonesian traditional music. Listening to the gamelan rhythm can be best described as listening to a harmony relaxing your mind and soul. Classical Javanese dances are usually accompanied by the gamelan music ensemble and held at the Sultan’s Palace. Gamelan music and classical Javanese dance performance have been preserved as a major tourist attraction in Yogyakarta.
Time: Every Thursday, 10.00pm – 12.00pm
Venue: Keraton Yogyakarta
Phone: +62 274 373721
Category: Cultural Performance, Music
Ticketing: Free. However, you need to pay the entrance fee to get inside Keraton (IDR 12,500)