BALI UPDATE #454 - 23 May 2005
April Arrival Figures Fodder for Optimists?
Bali by the Numbers: April 2005 Arrival Figures Demonstrate Continuing Improvement in Bali's Tourism Fortunes.
The April 2005 direct foreign arrivals figures for Bali are in and continue to portray a picture of improving fortunes for Bali Tourism.
Here's what the numbers say :
Total direct foreign arrivals for April 2005 equaled 116,272 that's an improvement of 4.73% over April 2004 (111,022).
Direct foreign arrivals to Bali over the first four months of 2005 tallied 435,990 a 9.19% increase from the same four months in 2004 (399.284).
Asia-Pacific arrivals of 258,149 represented an improvement of 4% for the first four months of 2005 as compared to the same period one year before (248,228). Despite threats of boycotts in connection with the Shapelle Corby trial, Australian arrivals for April 2005 (20,960) increased 10% month to month and contributed to the 7.9% increase in total Australia arrivals through the first four months of the current year (78,882).
Japanese travelers are coming to Bali in force totaling 98,376 during the first four months of the year 17.8% more than during the same period in 2004.
Taiwanese travelers have dropped a dramatic 35% during the first four months of 2005 (35,559). Industry observers point to lingering tsunami fears and the competing lure of greater access to Mainland China destinations as the underlying cause for the drop in Taiwanese visitors.
South Koreans are on course to soon displace the Taiwanese as Bali's 3rd largest source of visitor. For the first four months of 2005 a total 30,779 South Koreans came to Bali, a 42.7% increase from the 21,569 Koreans who came during the same period in 2004.
ASEAN visitors also improved during the first quarter of 2005 totaling 38.094 up 8.42% from the same period one year before. Malaysia, Singapore followed by Thailand continue to be the top 3 producers of visitors to Bali from ASEAN.
The Americas comprising all visitors from North and South America increased 23.6% during the first 4 months of 2005 (28,504). This demonstrates growing confidence from these markets but still lag 36% behind the 38,759 visitors from the Americas recorded during the first four months of 2001.
Similarly, Europeans are slowly making up for lost ground in terms of Bali arrivals. 20.9% more Europeans (109,026) visited Bali January-April 2005 than in the same four months of 2004. Reality check: 2005 figures still lag 19.94% percent behind 2001 arrivals from Europe.
U.K. travelers jumped 36.4% for the first 4 months of 2005 (23,003), but still down 36.1% from the 36,002 U.K. visitors recorded in 2001.
German arrival figures also improved, up 16.4% at 23,228 for January-April 2005, but down 11.03% from the same period in 2001.
The Dutch market increased 21.3% for the first four months of 2005 (11,413), but still 11.12% behind the totals recorded in 2001.
French tourists also improved 20.8% for January-April 2005 (12,744) a total that is down 9% from the same four months in 2001.
The Big Picture
Bali's overall arrivals remain strong, fueling optimism that year end totals will be something near the ambitious 1.7 million target set for the island by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
The four big engines of Bali tourism remain Japan, Australia, Taiwan and South Korean constituting 55.9% of all Bali arrivals.
Both the Americas and Europe are turning in much stronger arrival performances as compared to last year but are still failing to produce the kind of numbers they posted just 4-5 years ago.
Corby Case Having Little Effect on Bali Bookings
Survey of Airlines and Major Australian Travel Wholesalers Indicate Calls for Travel Boycott of Bali Getting Little Support.
Despite reports in the Australian media claiming growing support for a "boycott Bali" movement in response to an anticipated guilty verdict and prison sentence for Shapelle Corby, the Australian woman discovered with 4.1 kilograms of marijuana in her baggage last October at Bali's airport, an informal survey of airlines and major travel wholesalers selling Bali travel suggests little impact on holiday bookings to the island.
Corby, a 27 year-old native of Queensland, is scheduled to be sentenced in a Denpasar Court on Friday, May 27, 2005. Claiming complete innocence of the charges against her, Corby's defense team have maintained that their client is the unwitting victim of a bungled drug shipment scheme operated within Australia by airline baggage handlers. Indonesian prosecutors decided not to seek the death penalty in the current case, but Corby, if convicted, could still receive a prison term of life in prison if the maximum penalty is imposed.
No Discernable Effect on Bookings
Despite reports in the Australian press that as much as 70% of Australian agents are joining a "boycott Bali" movement as a response to the Corby case, an informal survey of airlines and travel wholesalers promoting Bali holidays conducted by balidiscovery.com would indicate little or no response to the boycott call.
Garuda Indonesia and Air Paradise, two of the four airlines operating between major Australian gateways and Bali, are reporting stable load factors and booking patterns generally equal or better than 2004. Moreover, both airlines are adding additional flight capacity in June in order to keep up with demand, a traditional peak season for travel to Bali.
Similarly, calls to selected Bali travel wholesalers in Australia reveal that, based on current levels of business, there is generalized optimism that bookings to Bali for 2005 will exceed the record-breaking performance of 2004.
While May bookings to Bali fall into the traditionally "low period," forward bookings for June and beyond remain very buoyant demonstrating strong market growth to Bali.
Wholesalers contacted by balidiscovery.com reported either no cancellations or, at most, a handful of cancelled holidays that could be directly linked with the Corby case and the boycott call.
Latest statistics from immigration authorities at Bali's international airport show Australians visiting the island in record numbers, while hotels in the areas of the island most favored by Australian visitors are almost all reporting being nearly "fully booked" for the month of June.
2004 was a record year for Australian direct arrivals to Bali totaling 267,520. Figures compiled during the first four months of 2005 indicate another strong year for Australian visitor arrivals to Bali with numbers running 7.9% ahead of 2004's record-breaking pace.
Region's Top Cops Gather in Bali
3-Day Meeting Among ASEAN and Regional Police Officials Discussed New Forms of Cooperation in Fighting Crime.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono opened the three-day 25th Annual ASEAN Chiefs of National Police Conference (ASEANPOL) on Tuesday, May 17, 2005, at the Bali International Convention Center (BICC) in Nusa Dua.
In his opening remarks, the President praised ASEANPOL for its growing dedication to the exchange of regional information in the battle against drug smuggling, the illegal arms trade, the trafficking in human beings, terrorism, financial and internet-crime, and counterfeiting.
The Need to Exchange Data and Intelligence
In his speech, President Yudhoyono said, "In these times, following the cold war, following the World Trade Center 9-11, and after the Bali bombing - we must create security through the exchange of intelligence among each other. This is different from the situation during the cold war, when each government tried to protect their respective security by hiding information from one another."
The President explained that in days gone by we only knew of security threats in the form of military invasion, ethnic conflicts, nuclear war or other conventional threats. "However," the President warned, "now, we face not only these conventional threats, but we also are engaged in a new form of war with non-conventional threats such as terrorism, the illegal trade in narcotics, the trade in human beings, crimes connected with money laundering and other forms of trans-national crime."
Reflecting on the severe economic hardships visited upon the people of Bali following the October 2002 night spot bombing, Indonesia's President said the threats and consequences of these new forms of crime demand cooperation between national intelligence agencies. Adding the need to remove cultural and racial barriers, he said, "We each need to approach each other in an open fashion, creating a new culture and atmosphere of security that will be condusive to mutual assistance. An atmosphere of mutual respect, without reference to racial differences, regardless if he (our partner) is Chinese, Australian, American, Indonesian, Indian, or Pilipino."
ASEAN and Regional Participation at Conference
In addition to attendance by the ranking law enforcement officials of the 10-member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), police officials from China, Japan, South Korean, Australia, New Zealand and East Timor also attended the conference.
Founded in 1981, ASEANPOL meets each year to enhance inter-regional cooperation between police agencies.
Air Paradise Adding Capacity
Additional Service to Melbourne and Perth to Keep Up with Growing Demand ex Australia.
Air Paradise International - Bali's home-grown international air carrier is adding services to keep up with growing demand ex Australia.
Denpasar Melbourne - AD 062 from Bali to Melbourne, with an intermediate stop in Sydney on 3 days of the week, goes to Melbourne five times week with the addition of a Saturday service effective June 18, 2005. The flight with an intermediate stop in Sydney will operate on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday departing Denpasar at 23:15 p.m. and arriving in Sydney the next morning at 07:00 a.m. The same aircraft departs Sydney at 08:25 a.m. landing in Melbourne at 09:55 a.m. local time.
AD062 operates between Bali and Melbourne on a direct basis without the stop in Sydney on Thursday and Sunday, leaving Bali at 23:15 p.m. and landing in Melbourne the next morning ay 07:00 a.m..
Melbourne Denpasar - AD063 from Melbourne to Bali, with an intermediate stop in Sydney on two days a week also operates on five days of each week with the addition of a Sunday service from June 19, 2005. The via Sydney service departs Monday and Friday from Melbourne at 08:25 a.m. landing in Sydney at 09:55 a.m. before departing at 11:05 a.m. en route to its 15:25 p.m. landing in Bali.
AD063 operates on a direct basis between Melbourne and Bali on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday leaving Melbourne at 11:05 a.m. and landing in Bali at 15:25 p.m..
Denpasar Perth - With the addition of a Saturday flight from June 25, 2005, the airline will fly 6 times a week between Bali and Western Australia. AD066 flies Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday leaving Bali at 18:00 p.m. and landing in Perth at 21:30 p.m.. AD0661 the new Saturday service will leave Bali at 14:30 p.m. and land in Perth at 18:00 p.m..
Perth Denpasar - Westbound flights from Western Australia to Bali also increase to 6 each week from June 25, 2005. AD067 leaves Perth on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 10:00 a,m. landing in Bali at 13:30 p.m.. AD0671 commences Perth to Bali service on June 25 departing Perth at 19:00 p.m. and landing in Bali at 22:30 p.m..
Denpasar Adelaide - continues to operate twice each week on Thursday and Sunday, with AD070 departing Bali at 01:30 a.m. and landing in Adelaide at 07:45 a.m.
Adelaide Denpasar - AD071 operates on Thursday and Sunday but leaves 15 minutes later starting May 19, 2005 leaving Adelaide at 09:00 a.m. and landing in Bali at 12:30 p.m..
Denpasar Sydney - AD062 operates three times a week - with the addition of a Saturday flight to the current Tuesday and Friday services, from June 18, 2005. Departure from Bali is at 23:15 p.m. and lands in Sydney the next morning at 07:00 a.m. .
Sydney Denasar - AD063 flies Monday and Friday on a direct basis leaving Sydney at 11:05 a.m. before landing in Bali at 15:25 p.m..
Denpasar Brisbane - operates twice each week on Wednesday and Sunday with AD064 leaving Bali at 01:05 a.m. and landing in Brisbane at 08:40 a.m..
Brisbane Denpasar - also operates on Wednesday and Sunday with AD065 leaving Brisbane at 10:00 a.m. and landing in Bali at 14:10 p.m.
All Air Paradise International flights between Bali and Australia use either A300-600 or A310-300 aircraft in all-economy seating configurations for 277 and 222 passengers, respectively.
27th Annual Bali Arts Festival
More Than an Entire Month of the Very Best of Bali's Rich Performance Traditions June 18 July 25, 2005.
Conceived and created 27 years ago by Bali's cultural visionary, then-Governor Ida Bagus Mantra, the Bali Arts Festival has grown to become a staple on the Island's cultural calendar.
Night after night from June 18 through July 25, 2005, Bali's best gamelan orchestras, dance and drama groups, and others will take to the stage at various performance venues around Denpasar. And, as in past years, foreign performers are also slated to appear with groups from the U.S.A. and Thailand registered to participate in this year's event.
Not to be missed if you are in Bali on that date is the grand opening parade through downtown Denpasar on Saturday, June 18, 2005.
Bali's leading travel i-portal maintains a website exclusively dedicated to the Festival containing the background, history and complete performance schedule for the current Bali Arts Festival.
No Visit to Bali between June 18 and July 25, 2005 can be considered complete without including at least one night of festival performances.
Indonesia Says 'No' to Open Skies with Singapore
Minister of Transportation Hatta Says Indonesian Carriers Unable to Withstand the Competition.
Indonesia's Minister of Transportation, M. Hatta Radjasa, was quoted in the May 17, 2005 edition of the Indonesian-language Bisnis Indonesia as saying that Indonesia is not prepared to establish "open skies" between Singapore and Indonesia as proposed for implementation by Singapore for 2006-2007.
The delaying in the introduction of any "open skies policy," allowing free and unlimited mutual access to the airlines of both countries, is necessary, according to the Transportation Minister, in order to allow Indonesia's domestic carriers the opportunity to consolidate their businesses in order that they will be able to compete with foreign carriers.
The Minister said the not-for-now "open skies" position would be his position during technical talks on air access issues between Indonesia and Singapore set for late May. Hatta explained that, in his opinion, an "open skies" policy would cause the collapse of a number of Indonesian carriers, resulting in substantial financial losses to the Country.
Fear of Low Cost Carriers
Claiming he was only interested in win-win solutions on issues relating to air access policies, Hatta indicated that his chief concern was that low-cost carriers would destroy the marketplace. He said he may be prepared to consider liberalizing bi-lateral air agreements if a prohibition against low-cost carriers could be part of such bi-lateral treaties.
Air Supply in Bali June 18, 2005
One Night Visit to Bali's Hard Rock Hotel as Part of 'It Was 30 Years Ago Today' World Tour.
Their music forms an aural history of the last three decades for anyone who's listened to radio and popular music. The "soft rock" sound of Air Supply's Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell and their long list of recurrent hits have made the Australian duo the musical favorites of two, and now perhaps even three, generations of music lovers.
Their songs are timeless. In fact, perhaps the only thing that distinguishes the group's sound of 30 years ago with more recent hits, are the memories each song evokes, creating flashback of specific moments and places where we first heard and sang along with Air Supply's very easy-to-listen sound.
A very short list of hits that have gone on to become cherished evergreens includes: All Out of Love; Come What May; Even the Nights are Better; I Can't Wait Forever; Making Love Out of Nothing at All; Now and Forever; Lost in Love; The Eyes of a Child; and Without You.
It was 30 Years Ago Today
The two Australian's first met in 1975 as members of the male chorus for the Australian and New Zealand tour of Jesus Christ Superstar. 30 years ago, during rehearsals and performance breaks with Jesus Christ Superstar, songwriter Graham Russell would pick up a guitar and play his own compositions. Over time, fellow cast member Russell Hitchcock started to sing along, discovering together the unique vocal harmony that has become the "sound" of Air Supply for three decades.
An initial recording, done on a piano and drums "borrowed" in the show's orchestrapit, created a cassette with the songs Love and Other Bruises and If You Knew Me which eventually brought them to the attention of CBS Records. Forming the basis of their first single recordings and once played on a Sydney radio station, Russel and Graham's stardom was guaranteed and they were launched a recording collaboration that has lasted three decades and has reaped over 20 memorable albums.
One Night Only
As part of their 2005 World Tour, Air Supply will appear for a single night only at the Hard Rock Hotel's Sand Island on Saturday, June 18, 2005.
Doors open at 7:00 p.m. with the cost of admission Rp. 200,000 (approximately US$20.50) per person.
Tickets are available from the Hard Rock Hotel.
All the World's a Stage
Indonesian Performing Arts Mart June 6-10, 2005 to Showcase Indonesia's Lively Arts to the World's Impresarios.
IPAM Indonesia Performing Arts Mart - has scheduled its third annual presentation in Bali June 6-10, 2005, commencing with a gala opening on the evening on Monday, June 6, 2005, at the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa.
Organized by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to showcase Indonesian performers to global arts presenters, the Mart serves both as a marketplace for theatrical bookings and as a forum for discussing issues related to public performance of the arts.
Open to the public, performers, and theatrical agents at no charge - the four day event is organized around a formal mart where contracts and specific engagements can be negotiated and a series of special performances by leading Indonesian arts groups at a variety of venues across the island.
During IPAM 2004, also held in Bali, a number of agreements were concluded for performance tours abroad by Indonesian traditional arts groups. The organizers of this year's event have said that they hope contracts concluded at IPAM 2005 will double over last year, totaling EURO 4 million.
Complete program details and schedules are available via the IPAM web site.
More information: IPAM Web Site
Bali Times Interviews J.M. Daniels
Bali Times Interviews Editor of Bali Update and President Director of Bali Discovery Tours.
The Friday, May 13, 2005, edition of the Bali Times carried the following interview with John M. Daniels, President Director of balidiscovery.com and Editor of Bali Update.
Long-since smitten by Bali's charms, Jack Daniels, an American from the state of Michigan, makes his living by selling the island to potential holidaymakers via Bali Discovery Tours. Outspoken on contentious issues like Indonesia's visa system and the rapid, unchecked pace of development in Bali, he has received awards by the nation's president and the Bali government for his contribution to the local tourism industry. Publisher of Bali Update, a widely read weekly email newsletter, he set out his thoughts to The Bali Times
How do you think Bali is perceived overseas these days? Does it have a discernable image say, related to recent events, or does the island's culture and physical appeal still shine through?
Never underestimate the tremendous "brand equity" possessed by Bali. With little or no professional marketing of the destination, Bali continues to get selected year after year in major travel polls as one of the world's favorite island destinations. Bali's image abroad is totally the result of word-of-mouth from past visitors; with no discernable involvement by spin-doctors or destination-image consultants.
On one level this says a lot about the island's intrinsic charm. On another, it's very worrying, as the people who live and work in Bali have no means to shape or influence public perceptions about the island when we become the focus of negative press coverage.
Multiple arrests of Australian drugs-smuggling suspects have made headlines in Australia and beyond as well as a high-profile drugs trial of a young woman. Some industry analysts have suggested these cases are tarnishing Bali's image, and that tourists will opt for other places. Do you agree?
As I said in a recent editorial on balidiscovery.com, it's more than a little ironic that that some Australians find their relationships with a free and democratically evolving Indonesia more problematic than with the autocratic Indonesia of the Suharto era.
The young woman in question arrived at Bali's airport with a large quantity of narcotics in her baggage. No one seems to suggest that the drugs were planted by anyone in Indonesia, which means they either were owned by the woman or she was the hapless victim of some bungled drug shipment originating in Australia. Arrive in any country and be discovered with 4 kilograms of cannabis and you're certain to find yourself living in a world of legal trouble. This is not a case of Indonesia's choosing or making.
Time will tell what fallout, if any, will result from the final disposition of the Corby case. One report I read estimates over 150 Australians are incarcerated abroad and 70 percent are narcotics-related cases. I also remember a celebrated case of some years ago where a grandmother arrived in Singapore with a Volkswagen Van with drugs concealed in the floorboards she similarly claimed the drugs were planted.
My guess is that any fallout from any potential harsh Schapelle Corby verdict will be of short duration.
From your experience in the travel industry, are people now more reluctant to travel abroad?
Aside from momentary hiccups occasioned by events such as 9-11, the Bali bombing, SARS scares and the invasion of Iraq, worldwide travel continues to grow year after year.
Do you see a new demographic of tourist coming to Bali?
There's been a dramatic shift in Bali's arrival demographics. We've traded quality for quantity. European and American travelers are running at totals that are below their performance of five to six years ago. The numbers have been made up by regional travelers from the Asia-Pacific region, spending less and staying for shorter periods. So while the total number of arrivals is setting new records, there's still a shortfall in the amount of spending and room nights produced. This fact explains why people continue to ask, "Where are the tourists?"
Also of concern to me is the lack of diversification in our tourism numbers. Japan, Australia, Taiwan and South Korea represent over 55 percent of all arrivals in Bali. Have a problem in any one of those markets and the impact on Bali's economy will be significant.
There are still some grumblings about the visa system that was introduced last year, when the free visa-on-arrival (VOA) was revoked for citizens of most countries; but on the whole, tourist numbers to Bali are steady and increasing, and most tourists don't mind paying for their visas. Do you see it that way?
I've been pretty consistent in my opposition to the VOA. We've shown that if the policy reduces arrivals by as little as 2.3 percent, the foreign exchange lost in overall tourism spending will more than cancel out any revenues collected from visa fees.
That there is a negative impact on arrivals caused by the VOA is proven by the shortfall in European and American travelers were currently experiencing and the fact that when seen in terms of total arrivals to all ASEAN countries, Indonesia lost significant market share in 2004 the year the VOA was introduced.
Do you know approximately how much has been taken in from visa fees and where the money is going?
The last figures I saw estimated that US$32.47 million was collected nationwide from the VOA's introduction on February 1 through December 10, 2004. My understanding is that those funds have yet to be disbursed, pending the issuance of a piece of legislation that will determine how that money is to be divided up.
For people who are on their first visit to Bali, do you think they get a good first impression when they land at the airport? For instance, in general, are they treated well by airport officials, including immigration personnel?
I can't help but recall that a tourism consultant once observed that a destination's airport is a pretty good mirror of the experience that awaits the traveler beyond the airport. When I think of Singapore's ultra-modern Changi Airport or the space-age qualities of Hong Kong's new airport, I have to say that they are pretty good indications of those two destinations.
Let me answer your question diplomatically: there's lots of work to be done that can improve the overall experience of Bali's visitors, both inside and outside the airport.
We hear stories, and have personal experience, of immigration officers extorting money from those passing through their channel. Is there anything immediate that can be done to bring more transparency and accountability to this area, or is graft too ingrained?
The first rule has to be having your paperwork in order and holding the proper kind of visa for your actual purpose for being in the country. This allows you the option of refusing any request for a bribe and demanding your right to discuss the matter with a supervisor.
My experience is that, when politely challenged, groundless requests for facilitation payments are generally immediately withdrawn.
In short, play by the rules and stand your ground if you feel you are being treated unfairly.
What kinds of complaints about Bali do you hear from foreign tourists?
Many people write balidiscovery.com because of our extensive web presence and our weekly newsletter that goes out to 15,000 readers. The complaints can touch on any aspect of a visit, ranging from moneychangers, harassment by drug dealers in Kuta, dishonest taxi drivers and poor treatment at a local hotel or restaurant.
I really don't feel it is my right to answer these messages and think Bali really needs an agency that will consider and respond to formal complaints from the public. Bali needs to be more vigilant in protecting the interests of its many visitors.
What is it about Bali that keeps drawing people back some who end up living here?
Without doubt, it's the people and the culture of Bali. Efforts by the Balinese to preserve their cultural identity deserve our support.
How do you find running a travel business in Bali? What are the major obstacles you come up against?
Promoting Bali to the rest of the world is a natural expression of my admiration of the people and culture of Bali. I'm sold. I love the place and you'll not be able to shut me up when it comes to describing what the island has to offer visitors.
However, to answer your question, promoting Bali has been challenging if you consider 9-11, terrorist bombings, SARS epidemics and wars in the Middle East.
After the troubles Bali has had in recent years, do you think people should make a concerted effort to focus on other areas to earn a living like a return to farming or manufacturing?
Bali should definitely take steps to diversify its economy, if for no other reason than to guarantee the island's economic survival.
It would be nice if infrastructure issues were addressed that would make Bali an attractive place for the regional or national headquarters of major Indonesian corporations. This would create clean industries with high-paying jobs for the coming generations of Balinese.
Should Bali have its own, local government-funded airline?
Movements to encourage investment by local business groups in Air Paradise are both commendable and interesting. Most importantly, a larger Bali carrier may help increase essential air access to the island. But let's not ignore the fact that we'll need to develop or import the necessary expertise to make sure any Bali-owned carrier is among the world's best-managed airlines. The modern aviation industry is an extremely competitive, high-stakes game. Any Bali-owned airline would have to make a profit over the long-term to remain sustainable.
How do you see the island developing in the next few years?
I hope the Balinese are going to assert themselves and take a larger role in controlling the destiny of this very special island. The lack of a clear development plan and the failure to enforce those rules already in place concern me greatly.
The franchise on Bali's culture and future is threatened by strip malls, unplanned development and the growing ownership of land by non-Balinese. The banjar (community) system that has served Bali's culture so well in the past is under threat by the growing marginalization of the people of Bali. Ironically, the current land grab will soon make living in Bali too expensive for the Balinese.
If you could change three things about Bali, what would they be?
A more thoughtful approach to planning and development, greater attention to preserving Balinese culture and a more professional approach to the promotion of its tourism products.
Bakso! The Musical!
Move Over Spaghetti Westerns! Bali Introduces the Meat Ball Musical.
"And now for something entirely different."
In the words of Monte Python:
Bali's Dyatmika School are staging their new school play "Bakso! The Musical." on Thursday and Friday, May 26-27, 2005.
Written, scored and performed with original music by students from grades 3-7 of the school, the musical tells the story of a group of kaki lima road-side hawkers and their struggle to survive in the fictional city of Surabisnis. The play's name derives from the popular meatball soup, Bakso, sold by Indonesia's street hawkers.
Tickets for the two-night run of "Bakso! The Musical." are Rp, 50,000 for adults (approximately US$5.10) and Rp, 25,000 for students (approximately US$2.05).
Curtain time for each evening's performance is 7:30 p.m. at the Puri Santrian Hotel on Sanur Beach.
For more information or advance ticket orders, call the Dyatmika School at ++62-(0)361-461874 or use the e-mail link provided.
Visa Launches Visit Bali Program 2005
Discounts Offered on Bali Shopping, Dining, Tours and Spas.
In order to stimulate travel to Bali and encourage more spending during a Balinese holiday, Visa International officially kicked off it Visit Bali Program 2005 program on Tuesday, May 17, 2005.
Banners along Bali's roadsides and at places of business across the island are offering discounts worth up to 50% for customers who pay for purchases and services with their Visa card.
Available to all Visa Card holders, the promotion of the program is being targeted at domestic travelers encouraged to purchase tour programs to Bali and, once they arrive on the island, to increase their level of leisure spending.
Participating merchants are displaying large horizontal banners stating the value of discount or additional services offered to those making purchases with Visa Cards.
Acts of War at Gaya Fusion Gallery
Installations, Paintings, Sculptures and Wearable Art by Hamad Khalaf in Ubud Solo Exhibition Inspired by Mythology and War From June 3 - July 3, 2005.
Gaya Fusion Art Space on Jalan Raya Sayan in Ubud presents "Acts of War" a solo exhibition by Kuwaiti-born artists Hamad Khalaf from June 3 through July 3, 2005.
An eclectic display of paintings, sculptures and wearable art some presented on military objects abandoned by the Iraqi army allows Hamad Khalaf to explore his favorite themes of war and Greek mythology.
Although he makes his home in Bali, Hamad Khalaf has never before exhibited his work in Indonesia. His work has been seen in solo and group exhibitions in Kuwait, Belgium, France, Italy, Greece, The Netherlands and the U.S.A.. Perhaps most notably, in 1998 UNESCO commissioned Hamad Khalaf to undertake a solo installation at their Headquarters in Paris.
"Acts of War" is intended to transport those who attend into a colorful world of ancient Greek mythology, synthesized and removed to a new plane through the artist's creative approach to materials and medias.
Gaya Fusion Art Space is open daily.
"Acts of War" runs from June 3 through July 3, 2005.
For more information telephone the Gallery at ++62-(0)361-979252.