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CENTRAL JAVA > RAMAYANA BALLET > Prambanan Open Air Theatre
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LOCATION:
The Prambanan Open Air Theatre is located some 5 minutes away from Candi Prambanan itself. It is located some 20km to the east of downtown Yogyakarta or 40km west of Surakarta (Solo).

There is a special tour arranged by Yogyakarta-based travel agents that combine an afternoon visit to Candi Prambanan and then catch an evening performance at Ramayana Ballet Theatre.

DESCRIPTION:

From what it seems, the open-air theatre is the latest addition to the many tourist attractions to Yogyakarta. Nonetheless, I wasn't sure when the theatre was built.

The theatre is set against the spectacular backdrop of Candi Prambanan. In the evening, the temples are lit with ample flood lights giving a magical setting to the theatre.

The tickets can be purchased from travel agents in downtown Yogyakarta or from the entrance gate. Based on my observation, the theatre was not full even during that full-moon weekend night. I suppose it is OK if you did not manage to purchase the ticket in the city because you can easily get one once you arrive.

There are 4 distinct seating arrangements in the theatre, each comes with different prices. A VIP seat goes for Rp150.000K (about US$16.00), Special Class seat Rp100.000 (US$11.00), First Class seat Rp75.000 (US$8.00) and Second Class seat Rp40.000 (US$4.50).

The type of shows vary from day to day. During my visit, I watched the 3rd installment (The Death of Kumbakarno) from the 4-episode Ramayana Epic (Hikayat Ramayana). These 4 episodes will only be shown for 4 separate nights during the full moon, normally in the middle of the particular month. Otherwise, each night during the dry season of May-October will feature a compact version of the whole epic story.

For the full monthly season of 2006, see below. I will try to update the yearly schedule to the best of my ability.

MONTH

FULL STORY

4-EPISODE

May-20062,4,9,11,16,18,23,25,30

12,13,14,15

June-20061,3,6,8,13,15,17,20,22,24,27,29

9,10,11,12

July-20061,4,6,11,13,15,18,20,22,25,27,29

7,8,9,10

Aug-20061,3,5,8,10,15,17,19,22,24,26,29,31

11,12,13,14

Sep-20062,5,7,12,14,16,19,21,23,26,28,30

8,9,10,11

Oct-20063,5,10,12,14,17,19,21,24,26,28,31

6,7,8,9

MY VERDICT:
Great theatrical setting and amazing night view of Prambanan Temple.

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