The Kedayan are an ethnic group living in Brunei, and in some parts of Labuan, Sabah and Sarawak among the islands of Borneo. Kedayans have a unique heritage and their culture is as uniquely important to Brunei as its language and music.
Kedayan music is indigenous to the Brunei Malays and is performed by its people especially during special occasions. The music is accompanied by different instruments such as percussions, drums, gongs, and stringed instruments of different forms. The music also goes with ethnic dancers wearing the traditional warrior’s attire.
Kedayan music is both relaxing and fun at the same time. As it is passed from generation to generation, Kedayan music evolved into a more modern and aesthetic music to accommodate the taste of younger generation. Although time has seen its subtle change, it still maintains its original ethnic and traditional melody. Travelers visiting Brunei often come to see the Kedayans and experience their one-of-a-kind music ensembles. This has become one of the mainstream attractions of a visit to Brunei.
The Aduk-aduk dance is performed during special occasions such as weddings, harvest seasons, and other public holidays. It is an entertaining dance to watch, with the colorful attires and the lively music activities. There are dances where the women are grouped together dancing with the men but have a different dance routine altogether. The steps are very easy to follow and most often, tourists and visitors enjoy the rhythm so much that they tend to dance along.
The Kedayan music is indeed a very captivating music to listen to. With the dance and the music, it’s really a captivating event to see in Brunei. Get to feel the Brunei experience when you hear the Bruneian’s Kedayan music. It is more like an interpretative dance, where the natives can express their minds and beliefs through dance and music.
Although Kedayans are known to be a closely-knit community, travelers are always welcome to visit their town where they can learn and discover the life and culture of the Kedayan people by listening and witnessing their own native music. The dance routines and music activities are usually being held at the town’s public parks where it is truly open for the public to see.
The Kedayans are really proud of their music which fascinated the interest of many travelers from around the world. Kedayan music is still being performed in the Kedayan community these days, and a trip here to get the chance on hearing their music would definitely complete a Brunei journey.