Plate dance is one of the arts in Indonesia that is unique, using the plate as an attribute in the dance.
Plate dance is a dance that uses plates as its main medium. Plates placed on both hands are swung quickly without being separated by a beautiful blend of movements making this dance unique and interesting.
Plate dance is a traditional dance originating from Minangkabau, West Sumatra. At first this dance was used as a ritual of gratitude for the gods after the harvest that they get abundant. In this ritual they bring offerings in the form of food which is then placed on a plate that they bring with dynamic movements. But after the entry of Islam in Minangkabau, plate dance is no longer used as a ritual. But the dance is used as entertainment for the community in traditional events or celebration events.
The movements performed in plate dances usually involve playing the plates placed in the dancer’s palms and swinging them quickly. Movement in swinging the plate is not just – carelessly, but combined with a special movement of the plate dance so it looks very beautiful. At the end of the dance, the plate that the dancer brings is thrown to the floor, then the dancer will walk on the broken plate.
One that is unique in plate dance is that the plate dancer’s fingers are usually fitted with rings on both hands, so that when dancing the ring will jingle with the plate and will create a unique sound when the movements are harmonized with the accompanying music.
Plate dance is usually played by 3 to 7 people. Uniquely in Minangkabau the number of dancers must be an odd number. The plate dance is not only played by women, but also men. Costumes that are used in plate dance performances usually use red and yellow costumes which are decorated with various golden knick knacks that characterize the Minangkabau. With this bright costume, the dancer looks elegant and energetic.
Plate dancers are usually done by professional people, because you can say this dance is very dangerous. If not done by a professional person, the plate will be thrown to the audience. Because it requires high concentration and long training to master the dance.
Plate dance performances can be found in the traditional Minang Kabau community events. Besides the plate dance performances are usually used to welcome guests.