Getting to Know Indonesian Culture: Serampang Dua Belas Dance


Indonesia is known as a country consisting of various tribes with various cultures, arts, and customs. One of the oldest arts known by various tribes in the country is dance. It is recorded that there are at least more than 300 types of traditional dances scattered throughout Indonesia. One of the famous traditional dances is Serampang Dua Belas Dance.

This dance, which originates from the Serdang Bedagai area, North Sumatra, is also quite famous in other Malay areas such as Jambi and Riau. This dance, which is played by two people in pairs, is a traditional dance but can also be performed as an entertainment performance. Want to know the complete information? Come see the reviews about Serampang Dance below.

History of Serampang Dance

Indonesia has a myriad of archipelago wealth which is also the result of cultural acculturation between one region and another. For example, the Serampang Dua Belas dance, which is said to have a combination of Malay and Portuguese dances. Like the Tor-Tor Dance which also originates from North Sumatra, Serampang Dua Belas Dance also has distinctive fast and energetic movements.

Initially, the dance, which was originally called the Pulau Sari Dance, was created by Guru Sauti in 1940. It is named according to the accompanying song entitled Sari Island. It was only in the 1950-1960s that the dance got a change in movement and its name changed to Serampang Dua Belas Dance.

Serampang Dance Development

As one of the cultural heritages, Serampang Dua Belas Dance has developed. At first, this traditional dance was only played by male dancers. Due to the prohibition of women appearing in public. However, because this dance tells the story of the love journey of a pair of lovers, in its development, women also dance.

The Meaning of Serampang Twelve Dance

Actually, Serampang Dua Belas Dance functions as a performance dance that can be performed in various events. Such as traditional events, cultural events, and entertainment events. However, this popular dance still contains the meaning of life values ​​in it.

Overall, this dance has a meaning about the provision of finding a life partner. The dance, which is performed in 12 acts, describes step by step the romance of a couple’s love journey. Starting from meeting, falling in love, until finally they stepped into the aisle.

Serampang dancer

The Serampang Dua Belas dance is generally performed by several male and female dancers in pairs. Usually, it consists of 2 pairs of dancers or more, depending on the group as well as the event to be performed. This dance also has a variety of movements that are quite unique. In it there are rotating movements, jumping, walking small, playing a handkerchief and so on.

Accompaniment Music

In general, this dance will be accompanied by traditional Malay music in its performance. Such as accordion, harp, tambourine, also other instruments. While the song that accompanies this dance is the song Pulau Sari. However, with the times, nowadays many choose to use digital music as an accompaniment to this dance, because it is considered more practical and economical.

Dancer Costumes

Dancers will usually wear traditional Malay clothing on the east coast of Sumatra. The male dancers of the Serampang Dua Belas Dance will wear a long shirt and trousers as well as other additional attributes such as a cap and cloth worn from the waist to the thigh. Meanwhile, female dancers wear long sleeves and long fabrics and complementary accessories such as headdresses and breastplate ornaments.


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