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A Most Epic and Ancient Tale from Sulawesi

2018 Revival of I La Galigo October 9, 10, 12 and 13, 2018 at Nusa Dua Bali

I La Galigo – a colossal musical theatrical performance inspired by Sureq Galigo – an epic poem from South Sulawesi is returning for a special limited engagement of on the Peninsula Island at the Indonesian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) in Nusa Dua October 9, 10, 12 & 13 from 7:00-9:30 pm

A triumphal premiere and world tour (2004-2011) of Robert Wilson’s inspred retelling of the ancient tale of I la Galigo was performed at the Esplanade Theatre in Singapore, Lincoln Center in New York, Het Muziektheater Amsterdam, Fòrum Universal de les Cultures Barcelona 2004, Les Nuits de Fourvière, Rhône-France, Ravenna Festival Italy in collaboration with Otelo/Elsinor Barcelona, Polimnia Paris and Crt Artificio Milan.

Sureq Galigo, or Galigo Manuscripts, contain the epic  origin tale of the Bugis people of South Sulawesi.  Drawing on these manucripts for inspiration, the stage production, I La Galigo, was developed.

The story begins in prehistoric times in Luwuq, the site believed to be the “home” of Bugis culture. The wild exploits of the core characters are triggered by the importance of family lineage and the dictate to find and marry a person of the same royal blood. The royal family tree begins with the Gods of the Upper and Under Worlds who send a son and a daughter to rule the Middle World. Sureq Galigo chronicles six generations, hundres of adventures, wars, rituals, cockfights, love stories and complicated marrages, ending when the gods recall all on earth to gather in Luwuq. The gods declare that the Middle World has become corrupt and must be cleansed. Descendants of the royal families are sent to the Upper and Underworlds leaving the Middle World empty and renewed.  After time, a son and a daughter of the original couple are sent from the Upper and Under Worlds to repopulate the Middle World, but this time the gates to the Upper and Under Worlds are closed and locked forever.  Life in the new world, the world of today, continues without the intervention of the gods.

La Galigo began as oral tradition chanted by generatons of storytellers constantly enriching it with additional characters, locations and adventures. By the 14th century, with the development of the Old Bugis written language, Sureq Galigo began to be transcribed – and further embelished. Today there are over 100 known manuscripts, more than 6,000 folio pages.  Sureq Galigo is believed to be the longest text in the world, longer than the Mahabhrata.  But there is no one standard version of the story. The main characters and important elements of the epic are always present but verions of each episode can be longer or shorter often dependant on the number of hours a storyteller was commissioned to chant.

The modern stage production represents yet another version of this ongoing tellin of this epice tale.

In 2011, the Sureq Galigo was recognized by UNESCO as an UNESCO's Memory of the World (MOW).

The limited Bali season of I La Galigo is timed to coincide with the IMF-World Bank Conference underway in Nusa Dau. To make this ambitious production return to life a world-wide team of talent was reconvened: Franco Laera and Elisabetta di Mambro - the original producers in Italy; the director from the United States; the musical composer from Solo; a dramaturge in Bali; and performers and musicians from South Sulawesi, Jakarta, Yogyakarta, Surakarta, West Sumatra and West Papua. 

The 2018 revival of I la Galigo is produced by The Bali Purnati Center for the Arts in partnership with  in Bumi Purnati Indonesia and in collaboration with EdM Productions (Elisabetta di Mambro/Simona Fremder). The Bali production is made possible by the La Galigo Foundation and the Indonesian Agency for Creative Economy (BEKRAF).

Revival 2018

Robert Wilson’s 


October 9, 10, 12 and 13, 2018

Performance each evening 7:00 – 9:30 pm

Ticket classes

Platinum              Rp. 1,500,000

Gold                       Rp.  1,000,000

Silver                     Rp.      750,000

Bronza                  Rp.       500,000

On Line Tickets   

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