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I Love a Balinese Parade

Colossal Parade Opens the 33rd Annual Bali Arts Festival.

(6/13/2011) The second day of the 33rd Bali Arts Festival on Saturday, June 11, 2011, was marked with a colossal parade involving 10,000 artists from nine regencies and metropolitan areas in Bali and two participants from other provinces of Indonesian.

The start of the parade was presided over by Bali's governor, Made Mangku Pastika, accompanied by the chairman of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) Ngurah Oka Ratmadi and the chief of Culture for Bali I Ketut Suastika.

The governor signalled the start of the parade by sounding a giant gong.

The Bali Post reports that, unlike past years, the parade was largely bereft of participants from outside Bali. This year's event  only saw artists from Central Kalimantan and West Kalimantan join the procession. Plans to have representatives from the Sultan Idris University in Malaysia were cancelled, meaning there were no foreign participants in the line-up. The parade, which followed a route from the Jayasabha Building ending at Taman Budaya Bali, was led by a contingent of dancers from the Bali Institute of Fine Arts (ISI). Also at the front of the festive procession was a large contingent of dancers wearing costume representing the 33 provinces of Indonesia. Watched by Indonesia's Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik, who hails from Kintamani, the parade's finale was a final contingent from the Marching Band of Bali's Udayana University.

This year's parade reflected the theme of the month-long festival - "Desa Kala Patra" or "Place-Time-Identity" - by showing the multiculturalism of Balinese life. The organizers of the parade endeavored to demonstrate the harmony of the different religious beliefs and cultural practices co-existing in Bali.

[Program of Events for 33rd Annual Bali Arts Festival]