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Rabu, 20 Juni 2018  

Wayang Beber in Musafiq Prasetyo’ Style

Yogyakarta, Jogjatrip.com – The Wayang Beber is one of the traditional performing arts, which is somewhat similar to the shadow puppets. The art is commonly performed by a puppeteer under the accompaniment of gamelan instrumental tools, which include gong, fiddle, drum, saron and kenong. However, Wayang Beber on the hands of two artists named Mas Ngabehi and Musafiq Prasetyo, the staging do not require a set of gamelan anymore, but they only need a keyboard. Both artists can produce various sounds of each instrumental tools of gamelan from the keyboard to accompany their staging.

This unusual habit from Prasetyo Musafiq has been done since early 2012. Equipped with a keyboard, the Wayang Beber is not only featured with the sound of gamelan music but also with other songs, such as campursari (Javanese pop music), pop, or rock. He plays the keyboard by himself, whereas the songs are sung by the others, although he can sing the songs of campursari well.

"This modern Wayang Beber can be performed anywhere. I only want to maintain what have been done by Mr. Senen, the late puppeteer of Wayang Beber from Pacitan," said Prasetyo Musafiq to Jogjatrip.com after staging in the opening of paintings exhibition at the Jogja Gallery on Sunday evening (01/04).

Actually, Musafiq was a painter graduated from SMSRI (Indonesian Institute of the Arts, Yogyakarta) and a member of the Bamboo Studio since the 80s. He had followed the puppeteer from Pacitan, Mr. Senen, and when Mr. Senen died, he wanted to maintain this valuable art form the extinct. "But Wayang Beber on my hand turned into a spectacle adjusted to the situation," he said.

Considering the Wayang Beber contains an utterance story, he paints the figures by himself on canvas measuring 4 meters, which requires one month finishing the painting. Each story of Wayang Beber consists of four scenes as shown in the story of Ande-ande Lumut that tells the figures of Klenting Abang (Red Klenting), Biru (Blue Klenting), Hijau (Green Klenting), and Kuning (Yellow Klenting) to propose Ande-ande Lumut. Up to the present, Musafiq has mastered several stories staged on his stage, including the story of Timun Emas (Gold Cucumber), Keong Mas (Gold Snail), Bawang Merah-Bawang Putih (Red Onion and White Onion), Rama and Sinta, as well as Ande-ande Lumut. "The story could adapt to current circumstances," he said.

Apparently, though it has been supported by a technology, Wayang Beber performance using keyboard did not always run smoothly. The songs played through via a floppy disk on the keyboard are also limited. "It is understandable that even a technology could be error," said Musafiq to the audience. This case made the singer spontaneously asked other song to be sung on the Wayang Beber stage.


Musafiq playing the Wayang Beber accompanied by Ida, who is singing campursari songs

Musafiq said that being a puppeteer of Wayang Beber is different with a puppeteer of shadow puppets. Only a few people who stage this art even the cost only takes around one million rupiah in one-hour duration. "When there is no performance to be staged, I paint with my expressive style," he added.

The situation of little demand to stage the Wayang Beber did not desperate him. To preserve the art of Wayang Beber is much more encouraging for him than staging the art. "Who else would preserve this art if not us? There are only two puppeteers of Wayang Beber who are exist in Indonesia now, me and one who lives in Karangmojo, Gunung Kidul," he said. (Teguh R Asmara)


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