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Past Event

Saturday University: East Javanese Dance and Female Power

Oct 6 2018

Seattle Art Museum

Plestcheeff Auditorium

10 AM – 11:30 AM

East Javanese Dance Performance and Female Power
Christina Sunardi, Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology, University of Washington

How are multiple senses of masculinity and femininity negotiated by dancers and musicians in east Java, Indonesia? Professor Sunardi introduces the gamelan music ensemble and dance tradition of the region, along with discussion of how contemporary male and female performers synthesize, contest, and redefine a range of gendered identities. By disrupting conventions of “male” and “female,” both female and male performers maintain spiritual power known as “magnetic female power.” Through dance and music, “magnetic female power” perseveres in the face of various cultural pressures that work to control and suppress it.

About the Presenter
Christina Sunardi
is an associate professor in the Ethnomusicology program in the School of Music at the University of Washington, where she has been teaching since 2008. Her interests include performance, identity, spirituality and ethnography in Indonesia. Her work focuses in particular on the articulation of gender through music, dance, and theater in the cultural region of east Java. In addition to her academic work, she enjoys playing gamelan music with the Seattle-based ensemble Gamelan Pacifica and performing as an independent dancer.

Dr. Sunardi has been studying and performing Javanese arts since 1997 in Indonesia and the United States. She earned her Ph.D. in music from the University of California, Berkeley in 2007. Her book about the negotiation of gender and tradition through dance and music in east Java was published by the University of Illinois Press in 2015.

Please note: South Hall doors open at 9:30 AM.


SEP 29

Strike the Bells Solemnly: Music of Ancient China


East Javanese Dance Performance and Female Power

OCT 13

Breathing New Air into Tradition

OCT 20

Musical Arts of Jodhpur and Jaisalmer, Rajasthan

OCT 27

Dynamic Korea and Rhythmic Form


Music of the Tang Dynasty: Connections to Japan

NOV 10

Movement and Metaphor in South Indian Court Dance

NOV 17

Modes and Melodies of Classical Persian Music


Exploring Kyogen: Comical Drama of Medieval Japan


206.442.8480 [email protected]

Full series tickets: $95; SAM members $50
Individual lecture tickets available at the door: $11, SAM members $6; free at the door for students with ID
Please arrive to your seat 10 minutes before the program starts, or your seat may be released.

Photo: Christina Sunardi

The Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are located on the ancestral land of the Coast Salish people.