Caci Dance from Manggarai, NTT Symbol of Strength

Caci Dance from Manggarai, NTT Symbol of Strength, Parinseja.com – Caci Dance is a game of agility between two men in Manggarai, Flores, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT). They are whipping and warding opposing lashes.

This dance originated from Manggarai community tradition where men fight each other one on one to test their courage and dexterity in the fight. And then it developed into an art.

Caci Dance from Manggarai, NTT Symbol of Strenth
Caci Dance Player. (Foto: parinseja.com)

The name “Caci” comes from the word “ca” meaning “one” and “ci” meaning “test”. So, this dance can be interpreted as a one-on-one agility test.

Caci Dance from Manggarai, NTT symbol of strength looks so heroic and beautiful because it is a combination of Lomes (beauty gestures and clothing worn), Bokak (the beauty of vocal art while singing). And it is also combination of Lime (agility in whipping or fending off the beating of the opponent).

Caci Dance is usually performed between two groups from two different villages. In addition, the dance is usually performed in Penti (thanksgiving after the harvest) ceremony, Pesso Beo (kampung kampong), welcome newlyweds, important guests, and in other merry ceremonies.

Caci Dance from Manggarai, NTT Symbol of Strength
Men fight each other one on one to test their courage and dexterity in the Caci Dance. (Foto: parinseja.com)

The Caci player wore a special costume and symbolized Manggarai culture. While, what is the Caci player costumes? And what is the meaning of the equipment? Let’s see.

Panggal (head cover) shaped buffalo horn. It’s symbolize “rang” (charisma and strength) Manggarai’s people. This is one of the symbols placed on the roof section of Manggarai traditional house.

The others is Ndeki (horse-shaped ponytail). It is made of wicked rattan with horsetail, placed on the waist. This is symbolizes masculinity and courage.

Songke sarong that is tied along the knee symbolizes the politeness and attitude of obedient Manggarai people.

Another costumes is white trousers symbolize innocence, generosity and sincerity. Then Tubi Rapa worn as beads tied to the chin carrying portion symbolizes the greatness and majesty of Manggarai men. And Nggorong (clatter) tied at the back of the waist.

Leros scarves wrapped around the waist and dangled at the front of the sarong. The others equipment of Caci Dance such as Larik (Whip).

Larik made of buffalo leather and twisted with wicker rattan at the end. Nggiling (shield) made of buffalo leather to deflect opponent lashes. Finally, Agang (shaped bow) made of rattan or bamboo branches used to deflect or withstand strikes opponent.

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