Apsara Dancing

The Apsara dance is a centuries old traditional Khmer dance and an important part of Cambodian culture. There are several venues in Siem Reap where you can attend a traditional Apsara dance performance. Usually these shows are offered as a package combining a (buffet) dinner and a dance spectacle.

A traditional Apsara dance usually depicts a story about the Cambodian daily life or an historic event. Most of the dances find their origin in the 18th to 20th century, since a lot of the royals of the Angkor period supported this art of dancing.

Types of Apsara dancing

There are four types of traditional dancing:

Classical Dance

The classical dance is known for the arched backs, feet and hands. The dancers make slow and feather light movements. They wear traditional Khmer clothing and have a graceful appearance. The classical dance usually presents a story of the ancient Angkor period.

Apsara

Folk Dance

The Folk Dance is most of the time used for celebrations and holidays. They present particular rituals and are often inspired by scenes from the country side. Popular dances are the Good Harvest Dance and the Romantic Fishing Dance. 

Shadow theatre

We have two different kind of Shadow puppet theatre. You have the Sbeik Thom which presents stories of the Reamker. The Sbeik Toot diplays heroes, love and battle stories. In both forms the puppets are held in front of a light behind a screen telling the story and creating the silhouette effect. 

Shadow

Lakhon Khol  

Lakhon Khol is also called the masque theatre. In most of the performances the men appear with ancient masques and perform a battle scene.

Lakhon KholLak

Apsare dance performances in Siem Reap

Most places where you can go to watch Apsara Dancing offer dinner together with the performance. Dinner usually starts around 18h00 or 19h00 and the dancing around 20h00. The performance will take around one hour in which several dances are presented. Some restaurants also offer buffet. Some of them will ask a fee to watch the show. Others don't and just expect you to eat there. If you want to have a good seat you can always make a reservation. 

You can attend an Apsara dance performance at the following venues:

Venue  Days Time  Area  Phone
Alliance Café

Tuesday,Thursday, Saturday

18h00 - 21h00        Wat Damnak +855 63 964 940
Apsara Theatre Every day 20h00 - 21h30 Wat Bo +855 63 963 561
La Noria Hotel  Wednesday 19h30 - 20h30 East Side +855 63 964 242
La Résidance d'Angkor

Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday

Monday and Friday

20h15 - 21h00

20h00 - 21h30

East Side +855 63 963 390
Raffles Grand Hotel d'Angkor Monday, Wednesday, Friday 19h45 - 20h45 Charles De Gaulle +855 63 655 168
Temple Balcony Every day 19h30 - 21h30 Pub Street +855 15 999 909
Smile of Angkor Every day 19h15 - 20h25  Angkor COEX, off road 60 +855 63 655 016 8

 

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