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Mocoan Pacul Goang

This a short version of performance traditional Mocoan. Mocoan is an oral performance tradition from Banyuwangi, East Java. The term “mocoan” literally means reading folklore from unpunctuated Arabic lontar scripts, although now the readings are vocalized from sheets of paper. While pacul goang literally means broken shovel, an anecdote filled with sarcasm or local humor using local idioms. Mocoan pacul goang is a nobility-based drama from among the people in the Banyuwangi region. In short, the structue of its performance consists of instrumentation, lontar reading (folklore reading/singing), drama, and songs and dances that emerge at the end. This form of art is performed as entertainment at weddings and other celebrations and can go on all night. The lontar script can be read/sung in macapatan poetry styles, such as dandhanggula, pangkur, and sinom, etc. The most popular lontar reading tells the story of the prophet Joseph (Yusuf)in relation to maintaining a happy family life. Gongs, kempul, ketuk, kloncing (triangle), violin, cello and keyboard music accompany the story telling.

This film is short version of performance tradition Mocoan Pacul Goang filmed at Banyuwangi, East Java, Indonesia, as part of the 'On the Record: Indonesian Performance Tradition" series which features interview with the artists of performance tradition. This series consists of raw documentary footage of each region’s oral traditions, mostly in the local language/dialect. A few films have some narration in Indonesian. Lontar has documented 30 performances around Indonesia.

Creator / Author:  Seniman Mocoan Pacul Goang (Mak Onah)

Publisher: Lontar Foundation

Place of Publication: Jakarta

Publisher URL:

Created: 1999

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